I guess I'm just a little biased in this one, but what fan isn't? I mean, we all want out guys to win at all costs and we hate the other guys from getting in our way. That aspect of fandom applies to all points of the game—except fights.
I miss the days of hard suspensions and huge fines.
We need to embrace what Paul Newman said in Slapshot about "Old time Hockey", the game without the unnecessary fighting.
Just play the game.
Last night marked the new rivalry between the Dodgers and the Brewers, and it all started over something stupid.
In the seventh inning of a blow out, Manny Ramirez was hit by a pitch with a nine run lead; that's baseball—sometimes you hit, sometimes you walk, and sometimes you get hit.
No big deal.
With two outs in the ninth and Prince Fielder coming to bat, Guillermo Mota figured it was time to get his former teammates back and even the score with the Brewers, so he hit Fielder.
After the game, Fielder marched over to the Dodgers' clubhouse, and if it wasn't for a wall of security guards and teammates, he doesn't really know what he would've done.
Hours later, Russell Martin said this:
"We don't want the same situation as last year in the playoffs, when Philly threw at Manny and we didn't retaliate, we don't want to be known as a team that doesn't have each other's backs."
I'm sorry, but this is just flat-out unacceptable.
I understand having your teammate's back, but just because someone gets hit, and he really just got grazed (it clearly was unintentional), doesn't mean you need to try and hurt someone on the other team. Someone who had nothing to do with the play.
If Manny has something to say or wants to do something about what happened, he will. That's the nice part about Manny though—he doesn't mind speaking his mind and is relatively a calm guy.
Sure, he has his days, like when he fought Kevin Youkilis in the dugout over what Kevin thought was a big strikezone.
Manny would have said something if he thought that something was wrong with that pitch last night. And Russell—this isn't the playoffs, this isn't the Phillies, and you won the game.
I guess I'm just sick of fighting being tolerated in almost all professional sports these days. I understand someone will lose their head once in a while.
I mean, being that physical all the time mixed with a bad day and an adrenaline rush will result in a little rage once in a while for some people.
Just stop having that happen every week.
It trickles down as well. I'll bring up those kids who didn't like the strike zone in a high school game. So what did they do? The pitcher threw a fastball, the catcher ducked, and the ump got hit.
Right in the face, with a high eighties rock.
If you create a steeper penalty for this sort of thing, people will just stop doing it, and we can all do what we came here to do: watch the game.
As for the players, they can just play the game.
Yesterday, Brewers' Manager Ken Macha said, "Everybody's trying to make a living, and this type of mentality puts everybody in jeopardy—myself, the other team, the players on the other team. So, to me, giving a guy a $500 fine and a two-day suspension is not enough. This type of stuff should be cleaned up."
And I couldn't agree more.