Houston (CBS Houston) – Baseball has a serious problem that should be cleaned up immediately. It’s not acceptable for pitchers to throw a baseball upwards of 90 miles per hour at hitters.
Manny Machado went on a tirade after Tuesday’s game in which Chris Sale threw a pitch at him. Machado said that a pitcher is threatening the career of a hitter when the pitcher throws at hitters.
Machado is right. There have been countless players in the history of the game that have had their careers derailed because they were hit by a pitch.
A pitcher throwing at hitters is modern stoning, and in what walk of life is that acceptable?
In what world can someone intentionally seek violence on someone else and that’s okay?
Baseball purists would argue it’s just baseball cleaning up baseball. That pitchers intentionally hitting a batter is something that it is justified because the hitter or that team did something to deserve it.
It’s flawed logic and it needs to come to an end for multiple reasons. Pitching inside is one thing and fine, but throwing at someone with the intent of hitting them is not.
The Red Sox-Oriole feud started a few weeks ago when Manny Machado slid in high, and cleat first into Dustin Pedroia. Was it dirty, was it bush league? There are differing opinions. Boston, and Pedroia, thought it was a dirty play. So a game later, Machado got a few inside pitches to let him know they didn’t like it.
There are two reasons why I hate this. For starters, you’re putting Machado in jeopardy of being injured, which would cost him time away from his team, and if he didn’t come back as good as he is now, then costing him career earnings. Two, if Pedroia didn’t like the slide, HE should do something about it. The burden of revenge should never be put into the hands of the pitcher. Pedroia should have taken exception right then and there. A flying fist with someone ready to fight will not do as much damage as the cowardly move of throwing at someone, but is more admirable in my book. If Pedroia wasn’t healthy enough to fight at that moment, then he should have stored it into his memory bank, and the next time he’s heading to third against the Orioles, return the “dirty” Machado slide with one of his own.
A similar situation happened on Monday in the Astros-Rangers game as well. Lance McCullers felt he needed to protect his players after Jose Altuve and Yuli Gurriel were hit earlier in the game. McCullers threw behind Mike Napoli, who homered earlier in the game, which led to the benches clearing.
Old baseball standard would tell you this is fine. McCullers is protecting his guys by hitting one of the Rangers’, and it’s been going on for years, but it needs to stop.