Kirk Gibson’s Diamondbacks are seemingly under the impression the fastest way to return to baseball relevance is to become the NL West’s Most Easily Offended Team. Not content with bawling over the sanctity of their fucking swimming pool being invaded by the Yasiel Puigs of the world, Wednesday saw Snakes P Wade Miley drill Colorado’s Troy Tulowitzki after Arizona’s Mark Trumbo was plunked earlier in the game. Opined The Denver Post’s Troy Renck, “the idea of retaliation is unfathomable in a Cactus League game” — because if you’re gonna risk maiming an opponent, at least it should happen during a game that counts in the standings.
Arizona general manager Kevin Towers (above) said before spring training that he wants his pitchers to hit more batters this season. “I think come spring training, it will be duly noted that it’s going to be an eye for an eye and we’re going to protect one another,” Towers told MLB.com. “If not, if you have options, there’s ways to get you out of here, and if you don’t follow suit or you don’t feel comfortable doing it, you probably don’t belong in a Diamondbacks uniform.”
Frontier justice has a place in baseball. But it requires context. A cleats-up slide. Admiration of a home run like it’s a first born. Bad blood. None of these factors existed Wednesday.
Why would Hernandez, a guy with no chance of making the team, throw at Trumbo with a runner at first base? A big inning only accelerates his exit to the minors.
Trumbo wears it, then Tulo takes one. The Diamondbacks, because of their public stance on this issue, lose benefit of the doubt. Every time they hit a guy, opponents will believe there is intent.