Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Not A Good Move By Porcello

Rick Porcello claimed he didn’t throw at the Red Sox Kevin Youkilis Tuesday, but it sure looked like it.
And if he did, his heart was in the right place - trying to protect teammate Miguel Cabrera, who was hit earlier by Boston’s Junichi Tazawa.
But it wasn’t the right move. In fact, it was devastating to the Tigers. They had the lead. Porcello pitched well in the first inning. It was a key game because the Tigers lost a close decision Monday to the Red Sox, and have a nightmare of a pitching matchup tonight against Josh Beckett. Chicago won Tuesday, rallying during the ninth inning in Seattle, and adding salt to the Tigers’ wound.
The Tigers chances of winning would have been much better had Porcello been allowed to stay in the game rather than the insertion of Chris Lambert, the classic 4-A player, who was sent back to Toledo following the game.
The Red Sox, when they are struggling, resort to such goon tactics. They did over the weekend while they were getting thrashed in New York, throwing at Alex Rodriguez and Mark Texeira. The Yankees didn’t respond. Their revenge came by sweeping the series.
There is a time and place to retaliate. In hockey, Darren McCarty waited until the next regular season to get back Claude Lemieux. It would have been unwise to do it in the actual series and take foolish penalties. How many times do football players hurt themselves with personal foul penalties after reacting to what they perceive as a cheapshot?
In fairness to Porcello, umpire Brian O’ Nora should have warned him rather than tossing him from the game. He didn’t warn him on a tight pitch to Victor Martinez earlier.
Youkilis charging the mound dictated Porcello be tossed. If Youkilis hadn’t gone to the mound, there is no way I can envision O’Nora tossing Porcello. That makes it unfair to the Tigers.
If there is good that comes from this, it seems to have garnered Porcello more fans in this town. He seemed like he had surprisingly few, despite winning 10 games so far as a 20-year-old rookie.
I think Youkilis should be suspended for throwing his batting helmet at Porcello. It was a sissy move. There is no place for that in the game.

Random Thoughts

- Rick Pitino could be gone before the start of the season at Louisville. Abortion is the ultimate touchy issue - especially in the south.

- I would be surprised if Daunte Culpepper isn’t named the Lions starter for their first preseason game Saturday vs. Atlanta..

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12 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey Pat,
Regarding your point about Porcello, I have to say I am all for what he did.To be truthful, for a moment, I wanted to see Rick get a few licks in on that big dome of his. But then that could have escalated the whole thing into something I think most real baseball fans don't want. You know Kevin Youkilis is just a hothead. It seemed like he was looking for anything to get it going at that moment. He obviously did not just see Cabrera get hit on consecutive nights as well. Then he did not realize that three guys on our team had been hit already in the series. No he just thought he would be the "man" for his team and go after our guy. They baited the Yankees all weekend and then they do this to our team and they are justified in charging the mound? Just watch... MLB will give him a slap on the wrist for the helmet throwing.Things like that I have very little sympathy for. I used to kind of like the Sox as the direct rivals of the money train in NY but now I believe I will just go back to how I used to feel. Numb.

4:20 AM 
Blogger Fred Brill said...

What an interesting night last night. I agree with what your saying 100% - but I was as emotionally charged by Porcello's take-down move too.

But this is what really got me mad - I was watching the Boston feed - damned MLB Game Day package.

As the event unfolded - the Boston announcers were as stunned as Porcello seemed to be - and spent most of the time the fight wound down stating "Porcello clearly did not mean to hit him".

But two innings later - they returned to the topic with one announcer a former major league star - stating "I have had it explained to me ... " and his opinion changed.

From that point on statements by those announcers sounded very ... snobish ... almost directed outside the booth .

Like when Perry was struggling in the 7th - "These Tigers bring these kids up way too young - look at him out there - he doesn't know what he's doing ..." and "you can see the immaturity in both Porcello and Perry - it's disgusting what these Tigers do ..." - and then the balk happened - (paraphrased - not exact words - but exact meaning).

So there's your Red Sox Nation.

Almost makes me want to throw a helmet at somebody.

12:50 PM 
Blogger Barry said...

Hey Pat, Porcello show me he is very talented. He responded very well after being charged and he ended up on top. Lucky for Youkilis that his teammates saved his butt because Porcello would have got few good shot s in especially punching down. This also shows that MLB ruling can get twisted. Ejecting players should not be the way to go unless you charge the mound. To keep the pitchers honest first time that pitcher hit a hitter he get 1B, second hit batter he goes directly to 2B, third hit batter he goes to 3B ect. MLB should keep track of how many hitters can get pluck per game and reward accordingly and this prevents a reliever from doing the dirty work.

12:59 PM 
Anonymous Michael C said...

This loss was 10x more frustrating to me than the last one. After Lambert gave up the 3 run homerun as soon as he entered the game in the 2nd(and who didn't see him blowing this lead), I pretty much shut the game off for the first time this year in a close game. I kept checking back occasionally but I just knew that the Tigers had no shot in this one despite the great first inning, and I couldn't bear to watch the inevitable. All this game really made me do is hate the Red Sox, who've I've always liked somewhat, if only because its better to root for them than the Yankees.

And personally if I was managing I would've had Porcello throw at him too. Cabrera has been hit in 3 straight games, and this time he was injured. I think a message needs to be sent that there are repercussions for that, even if accidental. Porcello hit ONE batter today and was thrown out. That was ridiculous and not a predictable result with no prior warning. The Red Sox have hit more batters than we have in this series but we're the only one that's had a pitcher tossed, because a Red Sox player decided to charge the mound. Silly.

3:17 PM 
Blogger Joe said...

This column should be about how ridiculous it was that Porcello was tossed without a bench warning after being charged by one of the whiniest players in the league. No way Porcello gets thrown out of that game in Detroit. How many Tigers had to get plunked? Tough loss, but if you aren't going to send pitchers to the plate, someone has to pay for Cabrera getting hit.

4:24 PM 
Blogger Pat Caputo said...

Anonymous,
Yeah, they did bait the Yankees all weekend - and the Yankees knew better than to fall for it. The Red Sox are a struggling club, looking for things to get excited about and change momentum. Tigers fell into their hands with that. Commissioners office knew that. One of the reasons they came down hard on BoSox with suspension of Youkilis.
Caputo

5:41 PM 
Blogger Pat Caputo said...

FreD Brill,
It was a short-term high, followed by a long-term low because of the result. The one good thing - Maybe some of these fans who did realize how good Porcello is for his age will start to understand. They seem to like the move.
Caputo

5:42 PM 
Blogger Pat Caputo said...

Barry,
The kid handled himself pretty well in that fight, didn't he? Good about point about twisted justice. I mean, Porcello should have been warned first, and then thrown out - not just thrown out.
Caputo

5:44 PM 
Blogger Pat Caputo said...

Michael C,
The pitch that hit Cabrera Tuesday was just high and tight, though. It wasn't a brush back. He didn't do a good job of avoiding it. Others in the series were different, though. Especially one to Inge.
Caputo

5:45 PM 
Blogger Pat Caputo said...

Joe,
I do agree with you that if Youkilis doesn't charge the mound, Porcello doesn't get tossed. Good point.
Caputo

5:46 PM 
Anonymous Michael C said...

I know they didn't hit Cabrera intentionally, but in my opinion, and to paraphrase a quote from the Untouchables:

If you hit Cabrera accidently, we'll hit one of your stars too. If you hit Cabrera intentionally we'll send one of your guys to the morgue!

7:10 PM 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Porcello made BIG rookie mistake taking HIMSELF out of a game the TIGERS rerally needed to have a chance at winning!With him gone that chance evaporated!He may become GREAT pitcher but right NOW he as to Mature a bit.If he had to relaliate might have been better to wait to seventh eighth inning IF at all!

11:57 AM 

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