Jeff Francoeur had some really nice words to say about Bobby Cox in the AJC. So nice that I’m not even going to rip on Francoeur for anything.
And funny too. Francoeur tells a story about the first time he was ever ejected from a game. It was early 2006. As soon as Frenchie got tossed, Bobby got tossed. The two of them were sitting in the clubhouse together. Frenchie was worked up. He asked Cox what he should do. After Cox told him to chill out and have a beer, he said that he’d probably have to pay a fine:
“And then you’ll probably have to write a $500 check. Or you can do what
I do, write a $10,000 one and tell them when it runs out, let me know.”
Cox has 158 career ejections. I’d like him to get four more in his last few games so he can have a whole season’s worth of them, but I suppose he’s done enough to advance the interests of umpire antagonism in his time.
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.