Ned Colletti called out Matt Kemp the other day. Yesterday Dave Stewart, who (a) is Matt Kemp’s agent; and (b) is one of the more intimidating dudes to have played the game in recent
history, fired back:
“This kind of thing in all the years I’ve been in baseball has never
happened with any general manager on any team I’ve ever played on where
you single out a player and you hold him accountable for the outcome of
what 24 other players are doing as well. There are 25
players on a team.”
Stewart also made a point to mention that Kemp is up for arbitration in the near future and within a couple of years of free agency. Which, given the context, strikes me as a warning to Colletti that if things keep up the way they are and his client keeps getting called out, Stewart and Kemp may not be in a dealing mood.
Which is a problem. Not as big a problem as the lousy signal it sends to every other player currently on or ever considering joining the Dodgers while Ned Colletti is on the job (i.e. we’ll throw you under the bus is we have to) but a problem all the same.
Fellow second basemen Javier Baez of the Cubs and D.J. LeMahieu of the Rockies got into a disagreement in the top of the third inning of Sunday’s game at Coors Field over sign-stealing.
LeMahieu reached on a fielder’s choice ground out, then advanced to second base on Charlie Blackmon‘s single. While Nolan Arenado and Trevor Story were batting, Baez was concerned that LeMahieu was relaying the Cubs’ signs to his teammates. Baez decided to stand in front of LeMahieu to block any information he might have been giving to Arenado and Story. LeMahieu got irritated and the two jawed at each other for a bit. Umpires Vic Carapazza and Greg Gibson had to intervene to tell Baez to knock it off.
There has always been a back-and-forth with alleged sign-stealing. As long as teams aren’t using technology to steal signs, it’s fair game for players to relay information to their teammates about the opposing team’s signs. Last year, MLB determined the Red Sox went against the rules and used technology — an Apple watch in this case — to steal signs from the Yankees. Other teams in the past have been accused of using binoculars from the bullpen to steal signs. In this particular case with Baez and LeMahieu, there was no foul play going on, just Baez trying to make the Rockies cede what he perceived to be their slight competitive advantage.
The Cubs went on to beat the Rockies 9-7 on Sunday.