Baseball nation is going nuts today over the brawl at the Giants and Nats game. Actually the disagreement was between Bryce Harper and Hunter Strickland after Harper was hit by a pitch thrown by Strickland. To be perfectly honest here, Bryce Harper has never been one of my favorite ball players. In fact, I don’t like much about the guy. He’s an arrogant hot head that gives baseball a bad name. Has anyone ever seen the guy crack even the smallest bit of a smile? Didn’t think so. But in fairness it sure looked like Strickland threw that pitch with intent to nail him, which I’m pretty sure he did.
But my words here are about the tweets, blogs and overall bad press Buster Posey is getting from his actions behind the plate. I mean, he didn’t make any effort to step out from behind the plate to help his poor defenseless pitcher who found himself in a real bind as Harper went charging at him like a bull in a china closet. The ESPN announcers kept bellowing about the fact that the Giants Catcher, Posey, did nothing to help his pitcher out ~ they’d just never seen anything like it, a catcher who didn’t jump in and join the fiasco.
Some thoughts about this, besides the fact Posey’s a leader so probably doesn’t feel a need to jump in the middle of the dogpile:
- Anyone who knows anything about baseball will remember the tragic injury Posey suffered a few years back that almost ended his playing career. He was in rehab for a year trying to scratch and crawl his way back to the game to overcome the injuries he sustained from that incident. I’m sure he’s been warned not to do anything stupid that might cause a relapse. Just saying …….
- Looking at the play after the fact, it sure looks like Buster was calling for a fastball right down the middle of the plate. And if a professional pitcher can’t throw one he’s in the wrong business, unless, of course, he was trying to throw the exact pitch he threw. A little inside you say? No kidding.
- Knowing the history of these two, Harper and Strickland, it’s possible there was a talk in the Giants locker room before the game that no retaliation pitches were to be thrown. If that’s the case, Buster could easily been thinking, you want it? You got it.
- This retaliation thing is rampant in the Majors. Don’t believe me? Just listen to Mike Krukow explain it during some of his color commentating. It’s a thing to be proud of, according to Mike. And no respectable pitcher would let an infraction go by without retaliating.
I mean, come on. Harper gets two home runs off Strickland two years ago and this is “pay back”? Give me a break. Not wise since they’ll probably both get fined and worse, suspended, causing problems not just for themselves, but for the rest of the team.
And tomorrow it’s likely the players will be warned ~ no inside pitches, and/or no hit by a pitch from either side or the pitcher gets ejected. What pitcher needs to play with that kind of pressure on him? So even if he accidentally hits a batter, the pitcher gets ejected and the batter takes the base.
Get your smarts in order pitchers. This is old school stupid stuff and has no place in today’s game. In my humble opinion, of course.