It was just past 11:10 PM EST last night when I was watching Sportscenter, resting after four days and five games of hell (I am a Yankees fan, but those four days were still hell regardless). Given the opportunity, I was tempted not to even stay up for the eleven o’clock Sportscenter, but just listening to Tony Kornheiser was enough to keep me awake longer than expected. And it’s a good thing I did because I have a message I’d like to send to Toronto Blue Jays Manager John Gibbons: I love you big man. Now, personally I think the whole “Gibbons thinks he’s too good for Blue Jays” routine is pretty damn cool. But honestly, it needs to end now. This can’t continue to happen if Gibbons gets another job in the near future because let’s face it; he doesn’t have a job in Toronto for the 2007 season anymore. If it was
still up in the air after the Shea Hillenbrand incident, then it was definitely put to rest after last night’s alleged fight with starting pitcher Ted Lilly.
Gibbons has already challenged then IF/OF Shea Hillenbrand to a fight all the way back in, oh yes, July, after the infielder wrote on the clubhouse bulletin board that the “ship was sinking.” Hillenbrand, who I guess is now looking smarter then maybe we first thought of him, declined to fight, and was later traded to the Giants.
Maybe Shea knew Gibbons had a nasty left hook?
Or maybe Shea just simply saw last night’s bizarre event take place before anyone else did?
“Ted Lilly’s a great guy. Ted Lilly’s an intense competitor,” Hillenbrand said. “He was a great teammate when I was over there. So I’m surprised that confrontation happened with Ted Lilly.”
Come on Shea, how surprised could you be?
Shea later added: “Stuff like that’s been going on all season over there. I had my issues with the manager. … They say I’m the cancer of the team and things are still happening, so I don’t know how you can make that assumption or that statement. Things like that begin to come out when times get tough.”
Ah, there’s a more sensible answer. It is no accident you are in San Francisco.
Given Ted Lilly’s history as a pitcher, he does not seem like the kind of hard ass that is going to give his manager a hard time when he comes out of the dugout for the ball.
But this is the same Ted Lilly, who if he throws one more time at former catcher Jorge Posada, will have a bloody nose just like the one he allegedly gave his manager Monday night in Toronto.
Lilly was most definitely wrong for showing up Gibbons last night. The Blue Jays gave him an 8-0 lead after only two innings and by the third, Lilly had given seven of those runs back.
One thing still has me stumped. What was Lilly pissed about? If I was Gibbons you can be sure I would have done the same thing.
But I also don’t get why, after the game and confrontation, Gibbons apologized? The same dude who will knock any player the f*** out if he has a problem with his philosophies, is apologizing like a little kid who got caught stealing little Johnny’s cookies at lunch.
No cookies for you Big John.
“I overreacted, no question about that,” Gibbons said Tuesday during his weekly radio appearance on Fan 590.
“I’m not proud of that. That’s not who I am. But I am a passionate guy. … It should never get to that point, but it did happen. I can’t run from that, I can’t make excuses. I’ve got to live with it now.”
If you are going to “chew” out your pitcher on the mound during the middle of a pennant race, in a season where your team is supposed to win the division, at least show some confidence in what you are doing and stop second guessing yourself. It’s not like the team has been winning much lately in the first place.
The real heat of this problem should however, be put on the shoulders of Team President Paul Godfrey, who by the way, doesn’t think any discipline of any kind should be given out to Gibbons or Lilly.
“My opinion is that it’s a one-night skirmish,” Godfrey said. “I don’t see any need for discipline. Ted and the manager worked it out between them.”
Yeah, a few punches here and there and your manager gets exposed to national television with a bloody nose and your starting pitcher has risked injury, DURING A PENNANT RACE, while also making it clear he doesn’t even want to be in Toronto anymore.
“Who knows how long I have left here,” said Lilly, who is eligible for free agency after this season. “Maybe a month. Maybe longer. It was a bad day. I embarrassed the organization.”
Good call there Godfrey. I guess it’s no surprise anymore as to why the Blue Jays haven’t won the American League East since 1993. You are basically telling America it is fine for managers and players to fight. There is no harm.
That is, until someone gets hurt. Or, just for kicks and giggles, it happens again. Maybe in September?
Maybe Vernon Wells will confront Gibbons after John states how Wells doesn’t deserve the MVP honor because of his lack of hustle during a 13-5 rout of the Yankees?
Vernon did after all open his mouth and state his opinion on the incident.
“Two guys were upset,” he said. “It happens at home and it happens here. That’s life. You just have to deal with it.”
But is that any of your business, man?
How about Major League Baseball? Where have you been lately Bud? Are you just going to sit back and let this slide?
That’s right, I almost forgot. No steroids, no consideration on the agenda of Bud Selig.
Congrats John Gibbons. You are the new bad ass of Major League Baseball. Who knows, maybe this has tempted Joe Torre to come out of his hypnosis during games and he will start bashing Alex Rodriguez with a bat next time the reigning Most Valuable Player (MVP what???) makes an error at third base.
Until next time, will it be “Gibbons promises to attend Anger Management classes” or “Paul Godfrey Made Me Do It: The Story of John and His Baby Jays”? We’ll find out soon, I’m sure.
Same Jays’ station, same Jays’ channel.
In case you can’t get enough…
In case you really can’t get enough, here’s a link to the video: http://sports.espn.go.com/mlb/news/story?id=2557329
Quotes courtesy of the Associated Press.
Copyright ©2006 Colin Cerniglia. All Rights Reserved.
6 replies on “Too Good For Your Team?”
Ozzie Guillen is number one in my book. He is the “Bad Ass of Baseball”
I can’t stand Ozzie Guillen.
punishment? Why should Gibbons be punished for taking Lilly out and then going to settle him down in the tunnel? Lilly should be punished for arguing with the manager in the middle of the game and thinking he is of higher authority than Gibbons. Besides, it’s not like Gibbons gave himself the bloody nose…
oh yea ozzie is on that list. the best was garland was trying to hit the batter, just couldnt get it done…
JD the only reason i think Gibbons should be punished is because this is a re-occuring thing. like i said before i dig his routine, but historically i have always seen managers as a daddy-like figure. even if the boy (lilly) acts up, he needs to take better actions for his responsibilities as a manager. maybe there is a change taking place in baseball with the likes of gibbons and ozzie, who are gonna give you hell if you piss them off.
granted, what lilly did was not right by chewin him out on the mound, but i thought in-team fist fights between pitcher and manager only happend in the movie “Angels in the Outfield”.
Gibby Gibbons is a loose cannon with a power ego problem. Was it not too long ago that he challenged Shea to a fight?? What an idiot!
Lilly was wrong for his actions, and deserved/deserves to be repremanded, but Gibbons doesn’t know when enough is enough. He should have stayed out of that tunnel and worried about a ball game that was getting out of control. Instead, he goes and challenges ANOTHER one of HIS guys to a fight, takes a beating, then, in the game, takes a beating. The man can’t handle his position. Pedro would have thrown his butt to the ground!!
nahhh man! you gotta be at least 80 yrs old (or however old zim is) to get the pedro throwdown!