"A New York Treasure" --Village Voice

Cruisin’ for a Bruisin’

There were some hard feelings and ugliness in last night’s game. Pitchers throwing at hitters, umpires issuing warnings and then sitting on their hands.

According to John Lowe in the Detroit Free Press:

As usual, Leyland refused afterward to take reporters’ questions about an umpiring controversy. However, the Internet buzzed with something he told Cooper after the Cabrera plunking that was picked up on the FSD telecast: “They’re going to the playoffs. We’re not going anywhere. Somebody is going to get hurt.”

Johnny Damon was not happy about Brett Gardner’s hard (and late) takeout slide on Monday night. Brian Costello reports:

“If anyone over there thought it was a clean slide, then we have a different opinion on that,” said Damon, who spent four years as a Yankee. “It’s part of baseball. But I thought the slide was dirty, and I’m sure a lot of those guys would agree.”

Gardner would not say if he thought Bonderman intentionally hit him, and he was surprised to hear Damon criticized him.

“That’s his opinion,” Gardner told The Post. “He knows how I play. I think if he was over here in this clubhouse he probably would have given me a high-five for trying to break up the double play.”

Things could get hot today. Let’s hope nobody gets hoit.


1 RagingTartabull   ~  Aug 19, 2010 9:24 am

I just don't like this team at all, maybe its just residual from '06 but I really enjoy watching them fail more than any other non-AL East team with the exception of Anaheim.

2 ms october   ~  Aug 19, 2010 9:33 am

if that is indeed what leyland said that is beyond ridiculous. you don't mess with people's careers and health like that.
i really hope nothing pops off today but if it does i would enjoy it if leyland gets a good smack upside the head.

3 rbj   ~  Aug 19, 2010 9:37 am

Um, even the Detroit tv crew thought the slide was good, clean baseball. You go and try and break up the double play.

Went to the Mud Hens last night. Later in the game the Indianapolis Indians had runners on first & second, no outs. Hitter skyed a ball to shallow RF, near the line. RF caught it, then threw to SS, behind the mound. SS then quickly threw to first, where the firstbaseman applied the tag to the diving runner at first, for one of those regular, all too common, that I've seen exactly 0.00000 times before 9-6-3 double play.

Later on, there was a liner back to the Hens' pitcher, glanced of his arm into foul territory by first base, 1B gloved the ball back to the pitcher covering first for a typical 1-3-1 put out.

You just can't predict baseball.

4 williamnyy23   ~  Aug 19, 2010 9:38 am

Damon is sticking up for his guy. That's what makes him a great teammate. But as Gardner said, I am sure Damon would have been the first one to give him a high five. If the Tigers don't like it, tough.

As for Leyland, if there is actually audio of that statement, he should be suspended immediately. Leyland is frustrated and probably on his way out in Detroit, so I am sure he was just letting off frustration.

5 williamnyy23   ~  Aug 19, 2010 9:42 am

[3] There was difference of opinion in the game thread last night, but from my standpoint, the injury was more a result of Guillen being relatively new to 2B and not Gardner being dirty. Replays show Guillen step towards the runner and plant his leg, an absolute no-no for any second baseman (I've played 2B at more modest levels and the first thing you are taught is never pivot into the runner). What's more, Gardner did not go spikes high. In fact, he tucked his legs underneath himself.

Leyland and Guillen both said it was clean after the game, so if their opinions have changed since learning of the extent of the injury, I think you can chalk that up to emotion.

6 monkeypants   ~  Aug 19, 2010 9:50 am

4) what was the context of Leyland's statement? Was he threatening, or was he imploring (i.e., if you umps don't do something, someone is going to get hurt because the players will police themselves if you don't)?

I'm not defending him, just curious.

7 Mattpat11   ~  Aug 19, 2010 9:55 am

I'm gonna be at this game today. I'll return with a REPORT!

Yes, I'm fully aware that no one cares about my report.

I'll also probably post random thoughts on twitter throughout the game.

8 monkeypants   ~  Aug 19, 2010 9:55 am

0) I think if he was over here in this clubhouse he probably would have given me a high-five for trying to break up the double play.”

Interersting quote, since Gardner all but admits to trying to break up the double play, which strikes me as an admission of interference. Of course, it's never called. Maybe if it was, good clean plays like this would decline and there would be fewer opportunities for injury.

9 williamnyy23   ~  Aug 19, 2010 10:02 am

[6] I think the context is provided by the "they are going to the playoffs; we are going no where" part of the statement. Why would such a prelude be necessary if he was just imploring the umps to do their job?

Also, I wonder how the Tigers feel about their manager essentially quitting on his team.

10 monkeypants   ~  Aug 19, 2010 10:03 am

9) because he might be saying that his guys have nothing to lose, so if the umps don't control what's going on, it is likely that frustrated Tigers players will be more willing to take matters into their own hands.

11 boslaw   ~  Aug 19, 2010 10:08 am

(9) I took it the same way Monkeypants did when I first read the quote -- why would Leyland reference the Yanks going to the playoffs if he wasn't implying/imploring that something needed to be done by the umps to stop it? Maybe he just knew that his guys would retaliate (without his instruction) since they had nothing to lose.

12 Sliced Bread   ~  Aug 19, 2010 10:09 am

Leyland was probably just blowing off steam. Wouldn't make too much comments made in the heat of battle.

Hopefully both managers will advise their players to keep their emotions in check, and not do anything stupid.

Wish I was going to today's game. I love matinees, and watching Hughes work.

13 williamnyy23   ~  Aug 19, 2010 10:26 am

[8] I am not sure sliding into a base qualifies as interference. The rules define interference broadly as an "an act by the team at bat which interferes with, obstructs, impedes, hinders or confuses any fielder attempting to make a play". That could pretty much include everything.

Gardner's slide was right into the base. He didn't go out of the baseline or make contact while Guillen was fielding a batted ball. I don't see any reason to consider the action interference. Otherwise, every slide into a base would have to be outlawed.

14 Diane Firstman   ~  Aug 19, 2010 10:26 am

Mark Feinsand tweets that Eduardo Nunez has been called up ... could A-Rod be DL'ed?

15 williamnyy23   ~  Aug 19, 2010 10:29 am

[10] It's Leyland's job to control his frustrated players with nothing to lose, but your scenario is possible. I am sure the home plate umpire will have to file a report, so he can probably provide the missing context. To me, it seems like a veiled threat (oh yeah, well if you wont act we'll take matters into our own hands). Something about Leyland makes me think he has control over his team.

16 williamnyy23   ~  Aug 19, 2010 10:29 am

[14] Oh great.

17 Diane Firstman   ~  Aug 19, 2010 10:31 am


the HP ump did a lousy job in not tossing at least one pitcher out in the latter innings ...

18 Shaun P.   ~  Aug 19, 2010 10:32 am

[14] [16] I just saw that on LoHud. My hope is A-Rod doesn't go on the DL, but Girardi wants someone around to give Jeter time off . . . and so Nunez comes up for a day (or three).

Of course that means someone has to go . . . how about Gaudin?

19 ms october   ~  Aug 19, 2010 10:35 am

[14] jennings posted that chad gaudin was present but is no longer around - it would be a glorious day if he was dfa'd and the yanks rolled with an 11 man staff for a while.

20 ms october   ~  Aug 19, 2010 10:38 am

[18] jeter does look like he could take a few off. and given the point of this thread, i would be fine with him getting the day off against detroit. i don't trust leyland to de-escalate this thing.

21 Shaun P.   ~  Aug 19, 2010 10:45 am

[20] I think Leyland is smart enough to know he has to tell his players to knock it off.

I do think Leyland's players may not be smart enough to understand he really means it. So yes, sit Jeter and Posada (and of course A-Rod).

[18] [19] Of course with Berkman essentially day-to-day as well, they've been playing two bats short - so why not a pitcher short? Though to me a 12-man staff is useless, particularly when you have a relief corps filled with guys who can do multiple innings at a time.

22 Chyll Will   ~  Aug 19, 2010 10:46 am

[15],[17] I agree with William to the extent that Leyland has to control his team' reaction, otherwise his statements will be construed as tacit approval to take matters into their own hands. The umps have been lousy for the most part of the season from what we've witnessed and commented about, but his statement only puts him in line to be held accountable first if something does happen. If we expect the unpires (feh, I'll leave it like that) to be reasonable and they prove not to be in most cases, we can't be surprised if the players give up on reason as well.

The question is, why is it so easy to hold players and coaches accountable when the unpires facilitated such nonsense? The MLB front office needs a swift kick in the butt so they can do something to strengthen that devolving area of the game.

23 Diane Firstman   ~  Aug 19, 2010 10:51 am

NJ Ledger reporting it may be Berkman to DL

24 RagingTartabull   ~  Aug 19, 2010 11:01 am

if it had to be Lance or Alex/Derek...well sorry Lance but this ain't exactly Sophie's Choice

25 monkeypants   ~  Aug 19, 2010 11:01 am

13) I don’t see any reason to consider the action interference. Otherwise, every slide into a base would have to be outlawed.

Intent, my man, intent. It was patently obvious that Gardner's very late slide was not a legitimate attempt to slide into the bag but rather aimed specifically at disrupting the second baseman. In fact, he admitted as such. That every slide into the base would have to be outlawed is absurd. The umpires are often called on to evaluate intent, and it was clear to everyone with eyes what Gardner's intent was. If they called more interference (which they probably should, by the rules), then breaking up the DP would be disincentivized and there would be a lot less of these late--and more dangerous--slides into the bag.

26 monkeypants   ~  Aug 19, 2010 11:08 am

It doesn't matter to me who goes on the DL assuming that the player is in fact injured. I'm not a fan of DLing Berkman solely to get an extra IF on the roster so that they can rest ARod and continue to play a man short. Now, if Berkman is legitimately unable to play for a week or two, then by all means DL him.

This being said, why not call up Miranda to replace Berkman? I know, this leaves the problem of Peña starting while ARod mends, but the answer to that quandary (to beat a dead horse) is to try to get by with 11 pitchers for a few days. As it is Nunez can't hit much, and with Berkman gone there aren't really any bats on the bench to use as PH for Pena. So Nunez's only job will be double extra emergency BUIF to Pena. In other words, the team will still be playing with essentially no bench.

27 Diane Firstman   ~  Aug 19, 2010 11:10 am

Berkman reporting his ankle is still swollen ... trainers won't allow him to run on it ...

28 Diane Firstman   ~  Aug 19, 2010 11:17 am

NYY lineup vs DET 8/19: Gardner 7, Jeter 6, Teixeira 3, Cano 4, Swisher 9, Posada 2, Granderson 8, Kearns DH, Pena 5, Hughes 1

29 monkeypants   ~  Aug 19, 2010 11:23 am

[28] Since the days of late career Bernie Williams, has any team in the league batted their DH (and often 1B) so consistently down near the bottom of the lineup?

30 Diane Firstman   ~  Aug 19, 2010 11:25 am


well, it COULD speak to the quality of the bats of the "position" players

31 Diane Firstman   ~  Aug 19, 2010 11:26 am

Berkman to DL

32 monkeypants   ~  Aug 19, 2010 11:27 am

[30] Oh certainly, that's part of it.

33 Shaun P.   ~  Aug 19, 2010 11:33 am

[31] And Gaudin escapes, to ruin our livers and stress levels another day . . .

[26] I agree with your plan, except that I would DFA Gaudin to get Miranda up.

34 monkeypants   ~  Aug 19, 2010 11:36 am

[33] That's why I mentioned going with 11 pitchers: + Miranda + Nunez - Berkman (DL) - Gaudin (DFA). As it stands, adding Nunez and DLing Berkman adds almost nothing to the bench or to legitimate roster flexibility, at least until ARod can play.

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"This ain't football. We do this every day."
--Earl Weaver