April 25, 2005

Drill Bits

Lengthy discussion at SoSH. A recap of the weekend:

Top of 2nd: Kazmir hits Millar (near knee).
Top of 5th: Kazmir hits Manny (outside of front leg; almost behind him).
Bot of 6th: Wakefield hits Gomes (leadoff batter; Boston trailed 3-1).
Bot of 8th: Mantei throws wildly to Huff and inside to Gonzalez (TB announcers felt he was headhunting; looked wild to me).
Bot of 7th: Schilling hits Crawford (2 out, bases empty).
Top of 8th: McClung hits Millar (leadoff batter; Tampa ahead 6-5; unintentional?).
Bot of 6th: Arroyo hits Huff (front leg, by knee; possible retaliation for Saturday).
Top of 7th: Carter throws behind Ramirez (Manny homers on the next pitch).
Top of 7th: Carter throws at Ortiz's head (4th pitch after Manny's HR).
Bot of 7th: Arroyo hits Singleton (obvious retaliation).
To me, everything seemed above board and according to whatever "settle-it-on-the-field/unwritten rules" exist in the game -- except for Carter's pitch at Ortiz's head.

This is merely the latest episode in the Sox-Rays beanball rivalry. On August 29, 2000, Pedro Martinez hit Gerald Williams. Before that game was over, eight Devil Rays were ejected, Brian Daubach suffered a hyper-extended elbow and Lou Merloni received a concussion.

On May 5, 2002, Ryan Rupe hit Nomar Garciaparra and Shea Hillenbrand. Then Trot Nixon's bat flew out of his hands towards the mound after a swing. Sox pitcher Frank Castillo hit Randy Wynn. Suspensions: Castillo (five games) and Nixon (four). On July 18, Tanyon Sturtze hit Manny Ramirez and Castillo hit Brent Abernathy. Both pitchers were fined. Esteban Yan plunked Ramirez later in the game, but was neither ejected nor fined. On September 9, Derek Lowe was tossed after hitting Felix Escalona for the second time. The following day, Tampa's Lee Gardner was ejected for hitting Merloni.

Dewon Brazelton: "I'm embarrassed I got thrown out of the ballgame. Normally when you go out there, it's a song and dance, but in this case ... we had just had two really hard-fought games and sometimes emotion gets the best of you. I'm an educated fellow, but that was uneducated. I really have more class than that."

David Ortiz on Lou Piniella: "This is a game, everyone is professional here and everyone needs to act professional. Sometimes watching TV, their manager [is] going off on their pitching just because they make a mistake. I never saw that before, you know what I'm saying? That tells you, sometimes everything starts up because of him."

And here I thought it had been all Hal McRae's fault. ... The St. Petersburg Times has two stories, as does the Tampa Tribune (here and here).

Manny Ramirez was named AL Player of the Week. In seven games, he batted .364, with four home runs, 10 RBI, eight runs scored, 24 total bases and a 1.091 slugging percentage. Since the award began in 1990, Ramirez has won it 12 times, second only to Frank Thomas of the White Sox (13). ... Last week, the Red Sox and Yankees both won Monday, lost Tuesday, won Wednesday and Thursday, lost Friday and Saturday, and won Sunday.

Baltimore at Fenway:
Tonight: David Wells / Bruce Chen, 7:00
Tuesday: Matt Clement / Rodrigo Lopez, 7:00
Wednesday: Tim Wakefield / Daniel Cabrera, 1:00

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