Benches clear, Rays act innocent

The Tampa Bay Rays play perfect baseball. They don’t do anything wrong, they don’t say anything wrong, and most importantly, they don’t hit opposing players intentionally. Or rather, this is what Rays manager Joe Maddon thinks.

“To be really carelessly incompetent on their side, to truly intentionally hit somebody by throwing behind somebody and hitting them in the leg for all the wrong reasons. They can get their own guys hurt with their kind of behavior,” Maddon said. “Quite frankly I think it was ridiculous, and I think it’s absurd, idiotic, I’ll use all those different words.”

That’s what Joe Maddon said after the benches cleared in last night’s game in Boston. This comes from a guy that didn’t find anything wrong with James Shields intentionally throwing at Coco Crisp and then proceeded to try and hit him with a knockout punch.

(Courtesy to MLB)

He seems to believe that the Rays are innocent in this whole matter. But let’s go back to May 17th, a day after Adrian Gonzalez said he was going to hit a home run.

In response, Rays pitcher David Price retweeted a comment from a fan: Moore should put one right between his numbers. @TBTimes_Rays: Gonzo guarantee: “I’ll homer tonight” @DAVIDprice14@Evan3Longoria #Rays.

Sure enough, in the very first inning and on the very first pitch, Moore hit Gonzalez in the thigh. Of course Joe Maddon claimed that wasn’t intentional, but he can tell us for sure that Franklin Morales intentionally threw at Luke Scott last night.

And I’m sure Maddon thinks that Luke Scott did nothing wrong either when he said Fenway Park was a “dump” and Red Sox fans are “ruthless and vulgar.” His players can say whatever they want off the field and expect to get away with it.

I’m not at all trying to say that the Red Sox are in the right for what occurred last night. That’s far from it. Over the last two series, however, both teams have intentionally tried to hit opposing players. Both teams have been involved in heated situations over the past few seasons. Neither team has acted perfectly. If they did, then these situations wouldn’t occur. But that’s baseball. It’s a long season, rivalries can be heated, and yes, the benches will clear sometimes.

So please, Joe Maddon, don’t try and act completely innocent in all of this, and stop making hypocritical comments like this one.

“Our guys got it. We had every reason to be totally into the push-back right there. We didn’t start anything. We don’t start stuff. We’ll finish stuff, but we don’t start it.”

Of course your guys had every reason to be involved in the shove match last night, but to think your team never starts stuff is absurd. The Rays have been on both sides of this battle, as have the Red Sox. Honestly, I don’t know how all of this got started, but it really doesn’t matter. From Scott’s comments to Moore hitting Gonzalez is proof that the Rays aren’t completely innocent in this matter. But in Joe Maddon’s perfect world down in the sunshine state, his team is a fun-loving, dress-up, group of guys that never does anything wrong.

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Posted on May 26, 2012, in Red Sox and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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