I realize this is over a week old and that Sox fans were all over it, but it completely eluded my radar, so it likely eluded the radar of others as well:
After Adrian Beltre clubbed a home run in Friday night’s game,
television cameras caught him in the dugout taking what looked like a
serious swing at catcher Victor Martinez. Turns out, he was taking a swing, and there was a perfectly good
explanation – if you’re someone who doesn’t like having their head
Martinez and Beltre are friends, but in the home run celebration,
Martinez touched the top of Beltre’s head — and the third baseman said
that’s something his fellow players know he absolutely hates. Beltre
reacted immediately, lashing out at Martinez.
The two were smiling throughout, but Beltre definitely put some force
behind his good-natured swing at Martinez.
“He knows I don’t like that. I don’t like anybody to touch my head,
and he knows it. He does it on purpose. So I’m not responsible for
everything that happens after that happens,” Beltre said.
Doesn’t saying something like this basically guarantee you a lifetime of head rubbing? It’s the equivalent of “psycho” from “Stripes” telling the platoon that he doesn’t like being called Francis.
Anyway, this would be a lot more interesting, I think, if the Sox were still struggling. Someone could legitimately get cold-cocked.
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.