Sunday saw the return of Cincinnati Reds left-handed reliever Amir Garrett to the active roster. He had been serving a 5-game suspension from Major League Baseball for “inciting a benches clearing incident” in which he yelled in the general direction of the plate and possibly Cubs hitter Anthony Rizzo that he was back after striking him out. That led to Javier Báez jumping over the railing of the Cubs dugout and challenging Garrett to come fight him, resulting in both benches and bullpens running onto the field with very little actual interaction between the two sides.

“Live and learn”, said Garrett on Sunday. “I learned not to have fun.”

Major League Baseball is supposed to be fun. Baseball is a game, and games are supposed to be fun. I won’t speak for the rest of you, but I will speak for me since I pay a good amount of money every month to keep these digital pages on the internet: Those in charge of Major League Baseball sure don’t seem like they want anyone on the field to have fun. And it’s been that way for a very, very long time. The manner in which Major League Baseball, both among some of the players, and those in charge of the game, police and say what is “acceptable” is very different than the way those things take place in every other country in which the game is played.

“I was surprised that I got 7 games at first,” Garrett said. “We got it reduced to 5. I was surprised I got that many games. Not going to talk about it too much. Not going to throw others under the bus. I think that was kind of steep, 5 games, but it is what it is. I understand they probably wanted to make an example. I’ll be the example, it’s all good, I can take it.”

And that’s kind of what it really feels like. Major League Baseball wanted to make an example out of someone. They wanted to let players know that no, you can not show emotion on the field if the other team feels like you can’t talk a little bit about it. And the punishment, indeed, was steep. But of course it was only steep for one side. Javier Báez, who rushed onto the field literally challenging another player to come fight him, was suspended for zero games.

With all of that out of the way, when Amir Garrett returned to the mound on Sunday it may have felt great to be back out there with the team and on the field, but he probably didn’t realize just how important his inning would turn out to be given that he was trailing 6-1 when he entered. But the lefty did his job and then some as he fired out a perfect inning on 12 pitches with 9 strikes as he struck out two of the three batters he faced. He picked up four swinging strikes along the way.

It was the 5th straight shutout outing for Amir Garrett after a very rough start to the season. Since April 28th he’s struck out 8 of the 18 batters he’s faced and allowed just one hit. He got some help from teammate Wade Miley during the Dodgers series and it’s helped make a big difference in getting back on track.

“It was a mechanical change I was doing,” Garrett said. “I was leaking my front side a lot. When you’re going through these stretches – I was getting hit, after hit, after hit – I was like I don’t give up hits like this especially to left handed hitters. There’s something I’m not seeing or that the hitter’s picking up and I was like this doesn’t happen to me. My biggest role is lefties so far and that doesn’t happen. I went and looked at some video, Wade (Miley) found something and I went to the Dodgers game and I felt it and was like, ‘ok this is a little better’. And after that I started putting some good outings out there. I’ve got to stay down and not leaking so much – hitters are good. They get paid to hit the ball, so just half a second they can see the ball and I was pulling off with my shoulder and it was exposing everything. I have a lot of deception to my ball – that’s why I can throw my slider over the middle of the plate and they will swing over it. For that split second they were able to see it and they were just picking it up and hitting every single thing, so I just had to bare down and take what Wade was telling me and when I was at my best I was staying closed and stuff like that. I don’t know why I was leaking open to start the season, but hopefully that little adjustment will be better from here on out.”

95 Responses

  1. Gary Clements

    He learned nothing if all he can say is “I learned not to have fun”. I can’t wait til this loser is out of the organization. Can’t stand him.

    • west larry

      How can you “hate” a player who shows a little fire? do you want robots out their? I’m a big supporter of Garrett. I think he needs to reign it in a bit, but I love his competitive spirit.

      • Gary Clements

        It’s not fire. It’s bush league, sophomoric., immature nonsense. Showing “fire” is producing results which this loser never has. 29 years old. Lifetime WHIP approaching 1.5….Lifetime ERA over 5….3 career saves. This guy is not even a has been……he’s a never was.

      • Doug Gray

        I’ll tell you again how stupid this post is, just like I did last time: It’s really stupid. Amir Garrett has been an above-average reliever three years running, and a rather elite one two years running. He had a very poor four weeks to start this year. And he was not good as a rookie starting pitcher.

      • MuddyCleats

        Kinda on both sides of it, but I’d prefer if Garrett let his pitching do his talking. I want to see him succeed & think he is talented. I am ok w/ a fist pump and even a H*ll Yeah now & again, but screaming at our opponents and showing them up probably isn’t going to sit well w/ most teams or the Commiss office.

      • Grand Salami

        Ha. Amir is being treated as a repeat offender. Manfred can’t help get every decision wrong

      • Doug Gray

        Rob Manfred is not in charge of these types of disciplinary action.

      • RojoBenjy

        I’m not the biggest fan of the huge vibrato Garrett displayed after only one strike out to end his stink-fest of a run, but who is more immature–the guy that runs his mouth, or the guy that has to run out on the field and shake his fists afterwards?

        for my money, the second guy is the less mature of the two

        MLB has so much as told the players that it’s ok to throw baseballs at hitters to make a statement, but don’t thump your chest or whatever. And that to me is the most insane aspect of it all

    • MBS

      What did he have to learn? It was a ridiculous suspension. Did you want him to learn that he should not verbalize his beefs, just hit players with fastballs? That’s what players always did, and many still do.

    • MK

      Gary he is one of the nicest young men I have met. I got to know Amir when he was with Dayton. We talked quite often. A couple years later I had a stroke and when he found out he sent a couple messages to check on me. He didn’t have to do it but did. He will always have my support. I’ll also say Sal Romano reached out as well. A couple of quality young men.

      • Gary Clements

        I’m glad to hear they reached out. From a non-baseball perspective I’m happy to hear that. From a pure baseball perspective….Amir and Sal have one thing in common…..they don’t get people out.

      • greenmtred

        Well, he just did get people out. I have no problem with his showing emotion; as Doug says, baseball is supposed to be fun, and competitive spirit is a good thing to bring to your team.

    • JT

      He’s a young man figuring it out. Think back to the dumb things you said and did at his age. Thank God my wife tamed me a little! I get where you coming from just try and cut him some slack. I think he’ll be good for quite a while. GO REDLEGS!

    • Doug Gray

      Also, Gary – I’m just going to leave this once: You can’t come here and call players losers like this. We do not allow personal insults here and the next time it happens you will have your commenting privileges revoked.

      Maybe take the words of advice from the person your email address is strumming for? I doubt that guy would approve of this kind of talk.

      • Gary Clements

        Whatever Doug. Accept for 18 outlier innings in 2020, Garrett hasn’t been “elite”. Even in 2019…his only other season he wasn’t hit hard….his WHIP was 1.4. If you take an 18 inning 2020 and a barely passable 2019 out of the mix, his career has been dismal.

      • Doug Gray

        In 2018 and 2019 Amir Garrett posted a 3.78 ERA in 119 innings in 135 games for an ERA+ of 118. That means his ERA was 18% better than league average. Dismal? Come on, Gary, you’re being ridiculous. In 2019 and 2020 he threw in 90 games with a 3.03 ERA and 104 strikeouts. His ERA+ was 160, or 60% better than the league average ERA. You are just flat out incorrect and wrong. He stunk as a starting pitcher in 2017 as a rookie. And he stunk for four weeks to start 2021. All of that time in between that covered 156 games? Yeah, he was pretty good. And he kept getting better along the way.

      • Chris

        But it’s okay to tell someone that their post is “stupid”, all because you disagree with it. Maybe you should hold yourself to the same standards. I personally agree with some of what Gary is saying, and some of it I don’t agree with, but calling his post stupid isn’t very classy either. And one more thing, when you stand on the mound after striking someone out, and then displaying the antics that Amir showed, I think many would agree that is something that a loser would do; someone with no class whatsoever. Maybe Amir let his emotions get the best of him, but he doesn’t seem to believe, even now that what he did was completely disrespectful. Much of what Gary said has merit to it.

      • Doug Gray

        Yes. Saying a post or comment is stupid is very different than saying the person making it is stupid.

      • indydoug

        Just curios but when did ERA or ERA+ become a valid statistic these days? I thought WAR was more accurate or FIP.

      • Doug Gray

        When were they not a valid statistic?

        WAR for pitchers is hot garbage (and the two main versions can come to incredibly different conclusions because Baseball Reference’s is based on actual runs, while Fangraphs is based on FIP and theoretical runs).

      • Corky Miller

        If Garrett pitched for the Cardinals, it’d be fine calling him more than a loser.

        A lefty arm like that should be better than a mid- tier reliever. Elite starter, closer, Josh Hader type shutdown reliever, something more than he’s been so far should be expected…. and I think he should expect it himself.

        You have to wonder if the constant mumbling to himself and antics takes away from his focus on making pitches.

    • Scott C

      I certainly agree with Doug. I am an old guy but I want to see the kids have fun. MLB needs to get their act together. I think the sophomoric actions were by Baez and further back on Molina. You don’t want to get shown up by some excitement when a player does well, the answer is simple: You Play Better. If they want to stop brawls then they need to stop the reactions not the celebrations.

      • Homer (Not Bailey)

        Letting them have fun is what? Yelling and cussing at the guy you just struck out? Charging the other team’s bench? Pro wrestling has better sportsmanship.

      • Scott C

        Amir was yelling that He was back, I didn’t actually hear if he cursed or not, but he did not charge the other bench, Baez jumped over the rail of the dugout toward Garrett.

  2. Klugo

    The envelope will always be pushed. The boundaries will always be tested. AG was doing just that on that day. Lines have to be drawn somewhere. They’ll probably be drawn somewhere further one day.

  3. west larry

    Great column Doug. I thought Garrett should have gotten a two or three game suspension, and a mandate to attend a anger management course. I thought Baez should have gotten a three or four game suspension for jumping the rail, challenging Garrett to a fight, and, in general, taking a relatively low risk shouting match to a near brawl. MLB needs to review their suspension policies.

    • Scott C

      Anger management for Garrett? He showed no anger. Baez yes. Garrett No, in fact he showed great restraint.

      • west larry

        Not for this one issue standing alone. Remember when he ran full speed into the pirates dougout with both fists flaying? He didn’t even wait for his teammates-I know it was a couple of years ago, but that , and a couple of other incidents have occurred. He has to tone it down, even if it means anger management. I love his spirit, but sometimes he is a little out of control.

      • Scott C

        Then reference that. But a couple of years ago is not today. And the fact that he did not run towards the Cubs dugout is a sign that he has matured.

  4. David

    Well, next they will have the players wear dresses and have tea parties together before the games.
    Pitchers used to throw AT batters that got too close to the plate. Now if you say something mean from the dugout, you’re in trouble.
    I’ve been to games where there was stuff thrown on the field before there was instant replay, when the umpires made a really bad call. But now you all must behave so, so nice.
    It’s all about marketing the game and making it “family friendly”, whatever that means. And I guess it now means that men that play the game have to be publicly emasculated by the lawyers (baseball commissioner) that run the game now, if they actually behave like human beings.

    Yeah, I’d like you to tell Amir Garrett he’s a loser and spoiled brat to his face.

    Internet tough guys. They’re everywhere.

  5. RojoBenjy

    The biggest news in this story is that out of Derek Johnson and Tucker “he’s really close” Barnhart, it was Wade No Hit Miley that figured out what was wrong and helped to fix it. I look for AG to come back after this.

    The biggest thing I learned from the suspension is that Michael Hill is bad at his job

    • MuddyCleats

      Fm one LHP to another; maybe that’s what it took? And it’s why a team brings in a veteran player like Miley or Pujols to LAD… help the young guys out and show them how it’s done

  6. steven shanken

    I agree. He was taunting and should have been at least warned when he went half way up to the batter before the guy even got in the box. When your ERA is around 8 you should be happy they let you on the field.

  7. AllTheHype

    Nice to have veteran players that are also pseudo coaches. Miley has a high baseball IQ.

  8. TR

    Fun comes and goes. It’s a job. You got the talent, Amir, as a needed lefthanded pitcher. Concentrate on that.

  9. J

    The part of this that continues to bother me the most is that the suspension was based entirely on the way other players chose to react. Rizzo seemed perfectly willing to laugh it off and go back to the dugout. If that had been the end of it and the game just continued as if nothing had happened, would AG have been suspended for yelling? Of course not. At worst he might have been fined a few dollars, but that’s probably it. The suspension was 100% based on the reaction of the other team. This is a terrible precedent (along with the Castellanos suspension) because it actually *encourages* Baez (and Molina, and every other player in MLB) to keep challenging guys to fight them whenever they say or do anything that seems even the slightest bit antagonistic toward a teammate. This decision actually *encourages* players to escalate yelling into fighting.

    • vegastypo

      That is spot-on. I’m waiting for the first time players from the other team react like that when Tatis Jr. does a bat flip and the other team takes exception. Will Tatis get 7 games, since it was his bat flip that roiled the other team? (OK, he would be a first-time offender, so would he get 3 games?)

      Of course not. MLB handled this about as badly as possible.

  10. Bred

    Miley figured it out? Where was DJ? It seems like a rather obvious tendency for a pro to pick up. I noticed yesterday that he has not kept his trim hoops body and is getting a bit of a spare tire. Maybe it is his body change the led to him being open. It’s kind of like the way Mikey Bicepts alters his body every off season and has to deal with the change in mechanics or injury. AG come from the in your face hoops world where confrontation is routine. As far as his emotion goes, I like the intensity, but he needs to turn his back to the plate and get his jiggity on.

  11. Steve Schoenbaechler

    I haven’t read the other posts. But, I hope people aren’t getting on baseball for this. Or, I should say “only baseball”. Football is doing it, also.

    I honestly don’t have a problem with baseball cracking down. For, when people lose control and get emotional, they lose their thought processes and always end up doing things they will regret, whether it was in or out of sports.

    It can be a tricky path for baseball and football to take. I myself like to see the players have fun. But, not at expense of other players. For example, scoring a TD in football, if they want to have a celebration dance, go for it. If they want to try to face down or talk down the defender trying to keep them from scoring the TD, I do have a problem with that. They already scored the TD; they don’t need to rub it in their face.

    • RojoBenjy

      Only one thought I’d have you consider: you wrote, “but not at the expense of other players.” What is more costly to a person, to get yelled at (shown up emotionally), or get hit with a small hard object travelling at 90-98 mph? And there you have it–MLB is ok with the latter, but not the former?

      It’s messed up

      • Steve Schoenbaechler

        I never said one thing to any degree in any way, shape, or form in getting hit with t 90-98 mph fastball. I even specifically gave an example of a TD dance or getting in the face of the defender after scoring the TD. You need to pay attention to my post.

        For your need, why even escalate anything to the point that you have to throw a 90-98 mph fastball at someone anyhow? What you are referring to would be exactly the latter I describe. . .someone reacted without the ability of thought. They didn’t like something, so they reacted, instead of actually preventing the situation that caused you to even think of throwing a 90-989 mph fastball at someone in the first place.

      • doofus

        Yes, Manfredniacal and his minions are messed up.

  12. LDS

    Everyone has become to “sensitive”, always looking for a made up reason to be offended. It’s stupid and destructive to both sports and society at large. Respect is earned not gifted. If the Cubs felt disrespected by Garrett, hit the ball not the player. I don’t care how emotional a player is, the league response was ridiculous. I would likely have given Baez a suspension day, Garrett probably not. And Castellanos, nope. When the players aren’t having fun – NEITHER ARE THE FANS.

    • RojoBenjy

      “When the players aren’t having fun – NEITHER ARE THE FANS.”

      This is a great point and why it mystifies me that a league so paranoid about losing fans does things like this

      • Homer (Not Bailey)

        What makes you think most fans want to see players scream and cuss at other players? What makes you think fans want to see bad sportsmanship, er, I mean the kids having fun? Is it the ratings that have been declining steadily since this crap started? Or is it you like watching jerks be jerks because it reminds you of, well, you?

      • RojoBenjy

        @ Homer not Bailey

        Do the fans want to see bean ball wars? I don’t really care to see the screaming matches myself. But I’d rather see that than that the customary chin music.

        I think they want to see their favorite team win.

        What do you want your children or grandchildren to take away? That if someone in a SPORT ( which has no bearing on your personal life) makes you mad, that it’s ok to inflict personal pain on them?

        That’s where Schildt of the Cardinals needs to step off

  13. DaveCT

    Please bear with the editorializing.

    Funny how people had no problem at all last year with Trevor Bauer showing emotion. Isn’t it? Well, except Rob Manfred. He apparently objects.

    I’d take 26 Trevor Bauers any day over the the stern, stoic guys MLB wants on the field.

    MLB wonders why it is not only losing fans in droves but never getting them in the first place. Watch the NBA or college basketball, the NFL, the NHL, MLS. All in on emotion. MLB. Just plain dull. And, no Rob, a runner on 2nd in extra innings and a thirty second pitchers clock isn’t about to get it done.

    One of the most eye opening baseball experiences I’ve had was watching Pedro Martinez pitch in his prime at Fenway. The park was filled with Dominican flags and fervor, and the crowd reacted to everything he did. Every fist pump, every celebration. It was like joy came to baseball.

    Rob Manfred. You’d best pay attention. Joyless baseball is a sport in decline.

    • Jimbo44CN

      The difference I see it, is that in Football, Hockey, Basketball on the Pro level. The guys shake hands before the game but when the bell rings the other team is the enemy. Say what you want about players get traded and so you never know where you might go next, but i think it’s baloney. I think they show plenty of effort, but to me they are just way too chummy. Do you think Rose, or Bench, or the Nasty boys were chummy with the other teams, I dont think so. The purpose was to win games and beat the other team, not make friends.
      So now am going on a bit longer so forgive.
      I did not like Amir’s antics after one strikeout against the Cubs one bit, but his punishment and the NON punishment for Baez is ridiculous. My favorite play the other day was when India tried to run over Connor JOe. Not a dirty play, just hard nosed baseball. If the guy is in the lane, run him over.

  14. SultanofSwaff

    Garrett egregiously taunted the other team and it was embarassing. On the other hand, bat flips and jawing can be construed as taunting. I support Trevor Bauer’s efforts to celebrate personal success on both sides of the ball in an effort to eliminate dangerous and outdated beanball wars. Question is, where do you draw the line and who does the drawing? I think it starts with the umpires–they need the authority to eject players for taunting in the moment in the same way they have to use their judgement to determine intent on beanballs. Let the umps bear the brunt of a team’s anger for a perceived slight that went unaddressed. The rub will be that the more a team whines and gets offended the more likely the umps will impose that penalty. It’s problematic for sure, in the same way that both benches get warned when a batter is hit seemingly on purpose–it potentially penalizes the team that did nothing wrong. Still, you have to start somewhere. I’d like to see these things settled on the field and not by a league official.

    • Doug Gray

      Go NBA model: You leave the bench you are suspended. Period. It’ll take care of nearly every single “bench clearing” incident. Then the players that are actually playing the game right then and there can do what they do. Hit a homer? Flip the bat. Get a big strikeout? Let the words fly.

      • DaveCT

        More so, this is what NBA players via their union want.

      • MBS

        I like that, but the problem is if a fight were to breakout in the NBA there are equal amounts of players on the court. Obviously were talking about worse case scenario, but you might only have 1 offensive player on the field with 9 defensive players. AG might like those odds, but most other people would find that intimidating. Other wise i do like the NBA model. Not that the benches wouldn’t clear in that scenario 9 guys vs 1, but the offensive team would be unevenly penalized.

        I think it would need a caveat of if you leave the bench or position, and you were not directly involved in the initial incident, and or are the 2nd player from you team to get involved. It’s an auto suspension. The initial 2 parties from their respective teams would be judged on a case by case basis.

      • MBS

        LOL, I agree. I don’t like the fights, just saying if the fight happens the penalties should be even.

      • Roger Garrett

        I agree.Its really a joke for guys to leave the bench or the pen cause they rarely do anything except grab another player and hold on.Let the guys have some fun.Baez hollering cause he feels like he has to have Rizzo’s back is kid stuff.Rizzo can handle his own business and what on earth could Baez possibly do to Garrett anyway.Let em holler do back flips or what ever they want.Leaving the bench is just for show.Fine them or suspend them on the ground of just being stupid works for me.

    • LDS

      How about the players put on their big boy pants and quit whining. They make millions to play a game. They make millions because they are there to provide entertainment. The whole of professional sports has forgotten that or simply no longer care. As the old fable warns, don’t slay the goose that lays the golden egg.

      • Doug Gray

        Baseball isn’t entertaining to a large majority of people anymore because they want robots on the field rather than humans who show emotion and excitement. They are literally slaying the goose.

  15. Doug Gray

    This is just a warning for all of you: Keep your political commentary out of the comments.

  16. Gary Clements

    I shouldn’t have used the word “Loser” to describe Amir Garrett. For that I apoligize. My intent is to point out that Amir Garrett has never established himself as a bonafide standout pitcher in any role he’s ever been given. I’m sorry, I refuse to look at an 18 inning sample size from 2020 and proclaim Garrett elite. His 2 best seasons are 2018 when he had a 1.286 WHIP and then the 2020 season which to me is an outlier. (and only 18 innings to boot). Other than those 2 seasons, Garrett has posted WHIPs of 1.613, 1.411 & 1.765 ytd. His lifetime WHIP is 1.418. His strikeouts per 9 would have been eye popping in 1981, not now. He walks nearly 5 per 9 lifetime, and has 3 seasons that exceeded 5 walks per 9. The whole creation of the “A.G.” alter ego…or whatever you want to call it……has been cringe worthy at best. To me, it comes across as a guy who lacks confidence who is acting out. The most dominent pitchers….the elite pitchers….overwhelmingly go about their business in manner void of histrionics. What makes them elite isn’t their behavior. What makes then elite is their performance. Is there time for Garrett to become elite over a sample size bigger than a meager 18 innings? Sure. However, acting like he has in episodes with the Pirates and Cubs doesn’t get him closer. He’s known more for his theatrics against the Pirates and Cubs than he is for pitching. Grow up. Get people out. Stop worrying about “AG”…….and just be a great relief pitcher. These are things you wouldn’t think you have to teach a 29 year old.

    • Doug Gray

      You keep talking about lifetime stats and I can’t figure out why other than to make your bad argument look better. What the heck does it matter what he did as a starting pitcher in his rookie year when talking about how he’s pitched as a reliever? As a reliever he’s been very good for his career.

      • Gary Clements

        The numbers point to “Very good” for 1 year (2020 in a very limited sample size) Heck, I’ll even say “Elite” for 18 innings of work in 2020. 2018 in his first year as a reliever, he was servicable. Not elite. He had a 4.29 ERA and a 1.286 WHIP. His strikeouts per 9 was over 10 and his walks per nine was 3.6. That covered 66 games and 63 innings…a nice, solid sample size of solid…not elite… His numbers actually regressed in 2019 as his WHIP came in at a very pedestrian, non-elite 1.411. His walks per 9 went up by a whopping 2. Still….he was solid. Not an Allstar….not elite….but befitting of his role at the time. His 2020, albeit in 18 innings….was elite. If he could put together a 0.927 WHIP over 66 games and 63 innings……he’d be in the discussions for awards. Look, I’m open to forgiving and forgetting and becoming a fan of his. I just need to see results…..over big sample sizes….I need to feel like when he is coming in….that we are in great shape. I’ve never felt that way accept for the miniscule 18 inning run in 2020. In fact, when I see him jogging in from the bully…..I’m thinking we need at least a 4 run lead. That’s just not how elite relievers are supposed to make you feel. The elite guys bring a sense of doom. The only sense of doom that Garrett brings is to the Reds, not the opponent. Sorry……he just isn’t the guy you are trying to contend he is. He’s just not. It’s not an opinion. It’s right here.

  17. LDS

    I see the lineup is out for tonight’s game and as usual it’s unfathomable. Why bench Shogo, who was 3-4 yesterday, and is a lefty. At least, Senzel is in the infield again so it’s unlikely he’ll run into a wall, maybe a dugout.

    • Doug Gray

      You have to choose to play Tyler Naquin or Shogo Akiyama right now. Bell chose Naquin.

      Unless I’m missing a lineup that can get both in there that doesn’t involve sitting Winker or Castellanos – which isn’t going to happen.

      • LDS

        How about Winker at 1st instead of Farmer. Or give Suarez a day off to get his head together. While the ‘hot hand’ is statistically a myth, it’s goes to confidence building, etc.

      • Doug Gray

        Winker’s never played first base.

        Giving Suárez a day off slides Farmer to shortstop, but it still doesn’t open up a spot in the outfield for Shogo/Naquin because Castellanos and Winker aren’t going to be playing first.

      • MBS

        This isn’t a, Bell can’t make lineups problem. This is a, the front office can’t manage a roster problem. All of our best reserve players are in the OF, even without Naquin showing up we had 4 good OF with a 5th high ceiling guy in Aquino.

        You look at the infield coming into the season, we had a lot of problems.

        No MLB level starting SS.
        Our best 2B is our starting CF.
        2 starting 3B’s, one forced to play out of position.
        An aging poor defending 1B.

        I don’t understand why we aren’t in first place. I’m not a Bell fan, but if he can jumble these players together and make it to the playoffs, I’m going to vote for him to be manager of the year. OK I don’t get to vote, but wow, what a mess.

    • LDS

      10 runs against SF? I’m all for it. That would be fun.

      • Gary Clements

        Look at the splits. SF pitching stats benefit TREMENDOUSLY from that ridiculous park they play in. When they play on the road, the fences have to look like they are right out behind second base to them.

  18. MK

    I am all for letting the players take care of it themselves and I’m not talking about head hunting. But you throw at our Star your star can expect to get the seat of his pant dirty or the opposing hitter can . A good shot in the butt gets it done. This would stop this. If one of Amir’s teammates gets drilled in the hip then the teammate will have his own discussion with Amir. I did not see these problems in the 60’s because teams new at some point they would face a Drysdale,Maloney, Gibson, Marichal, Duren, etc. They respected the consequences and now the umpires have taken that away.

    • greenmtred

      With all due respect, I watched a lot of baseball in ’60’s, too, and it wasn’t any more tranquil than now. How do you suppose Marichal, Gibson et al came to be feared? Doug’s solution–leave the bench and you’re suspended would do a lot. Pitchers hitting guys in the butt would incite beanball wars.

  19. VegasRed

    I like the fact that Miley, a veteran fellow lefty, helped his teammate. Rather than criticize DJ, let’s recognize one more great thing about Miley, whose no hitter is still amazing me!

    • doofus

      Yeah, what was the DJ criticism about, posed by someone earlier? I thought that was odd and a reach.

  20. Old Big Ed

    I’ve never found contrived “look-at-me” celebrations in team sports to be remotely entertaining. I think the Ocho Cinqo and Terrell Owens stuff to be crass and counterproductive. I don’t see much value in a basketball player pounding his chest and scowling at the nearest defender after a dunk. Spontaneous celebrations like spiking the football, or giving the ball to a lineman to spike, are great. I’m all for a guy who throws down a big dunk turning to give his teammate a hardy high-five. I didn’t have a problem with Jose Batista’s bat flip, because it was spontaneous in a crucial situation.

    It isn’t a thin line; it is a clear line. Celebrate; don’t taunt. Nobody has a problem with Garrett’s pumping his fists toward his infielders or dugout after a big strikeout. But his flex last time was taunting, and it just isn’t necessary or helpful. He could have had just as much “fun” turning to a teammate and making a celebratory gesture. (Having said that, 5 games was ridiculous; a fine would have sufficed.)

    Anybody who watched Eric Davis or George Brett or Roberto Clemente in their primes sure didn’t find them staid or robotic. They all played with passion and flair, but didn’t find the need to taunt their opponents. Would Joe Morgan really have been more “fun” or exciting if he had flexed and preened to Don Sutton every time he stole second base? Should Johnny Bench have moon-walked around home plate if he threw out Davey Lopes stealing? Anybody ever call Nolan Ryan a robot?

    • Doug Gray

      Maybe it actually is helpful, Ed. Maybe that is what gets some guys where they need to be. And as far as we can all tell, Amir was not shouting AT the Cubs player. He was simply facing the plate while shouting. That’s a spontaneous celebration and reaction.

      • Old Big Ed

        Nah, he was directing it at the Cubs. Can’t see where a sane Reds player would need that stuff to get their competitive fire going; I can see where it would get the Cubs’ fires going.

        He’d get into Rizzo’s head even more by walking away like it was no big deal to strike him out, because he in fact does own Anthony Rizzo.

      • greenmtred

        The context matters: Garrett had just had a big moment in a very–to that point–disappointing season. I took it as spontaneous celebration all the way.

    • Corky Miller

      Best comment I’ve seen on here in a while!!! Well said sir.

      If you “need” that BS to get people out, then you’re just not that good.

  21. Indy Red Man

    I know I harp on the Rays as an organizational example too often, but I’d seriously consider using Garrett as an opener. Tampa has some success with Ryne Stanek in that role. Stanek pitched 122 ip for Tampa in 2018-19 with a 3.47 era. 56 starts and 100 appearances overall.

    Lets say AG opens for Castillo tomorrow. SF has a ton of lefty bats so that favors AG then Castillo enters the 3rd inning to start with the 8 or 9 hitter hopefully and could navigate his 1st inning troubles more easily. Hoffman needs help too or whoever replaces him. When you have some depth, but no superstars then you have to think outside the box.

  22. DaveCT

    Big Sal electing free agency after his DFA. I hope he signs with the Mets, his home team growing up (as I’ve read here before).

  23. JB

    I’ll take Clayton Kershaws opinion about showboating that was in the LA paper. Dont show up the other team. I’ll take a mike trout anytime. Never says a word and let’s his performance speak. You can have fun and emotion but respect your opponent.