Should Lackey Have Been Ejected?
John Lackey threw two pitches yesterday before being ejected by home plate umpire Bob Davidson. The first pitch was behind the back of Ian Kinsler similar to the one thrown recently by White Sox closer Bobby Jenks. The second pitch hit Kinsler in the ribs.
Lackey said he was rusty after being out of action and had no intention of hitting Kinsler. Angels manager Mike Scioscia ran on the field to protest the ejection but to no avail.
Luckily for Lackey the Angels had scored in the top half of the first inning so he didn’t get the loss when the Rangers scored later in the inning.
Worst of all the Angels had to use their bullpen for all nine innings of the contest.
Mitch Williams made the comment on the MLB Tonight program that this was taking the pitch count thing to the extreme after only two pitches.
I am an Ian Kinsler fan but I still don’t want to see Lackey suspended because of this incident which shouldn’t have been an incident in the first place.
For some reason the umpires seem to be intent on tossing pitchers who come close to or hit batters. Kevin Millwood was the exception when he hit two White Sox hitters in a game this season without getting ejected. But then Bobby Jenks throws behind the back of Kinsler and there is talk of suspension but he is eventually fined for the pitch.
This is just another reason to do away with the designated hitter rule since AL pitchers can throw at batters all they want and not have to suffer any payback since they are not allowed to bat unless they are visiting a NL park.
Baseball old timers have to be amused at this latest development in baseball in which the umpires are protecting the hitters. Nobody was protecting hitters from Bob Gibson who after giving up a homer to a batter would exact revenge by hitting the next batter.
In some cases pitchers would wait for the player who hit the home run to bat again and then deck him. Now all of that seems to be out the window with this crackdown on close pitches or batters actually being hit by pitches.
The umpires are favoring the hitters by cracking down on the pitchers. Some pitchers with no intention of hitting a batter are only throwing inside to keep a batter off the plate but now they will know they are in danger of being ejected if they accidentally hit that batter.
It will be interesting to see if the umpires continue the trend of coddling the batters at the expense of the pitchers. Nobody wants to see a batter hurt by a pitch but nobody wants to see baseball become a game for namby pambly lounge lizards where batters can dig in at the plate with no fear of retribution.
Paging Bud Selig….It is time to take action that insures baseball can be played the way it has been played in the past. Selig is probably hiding behind a rock somewhere so he won’t have to face this situation like when he hid for five days before even mentioning the Alex Rodriguez steroids situation.