It has been an ugly day in Detroit so far. Jim Leyland was ejected early for arguing balls and strikes, and then starter Brad Penny — who was losing to the Angels 5-2 at the time — got into an argument with his catcher, Victor Martinez, in the top of the fourth inning. MLB.com doesn’t have the video up yet, but there’s a Gif of it up over at SB Nation.
Penny faced two more batters, giving up another run before being removed for Charlie Furbush (who allowed another run chargeable to Penny).
Penny has eaten a lot of innings this year, but he’s starting to unravel as the season wears on. But really, no matter how well you pitch, you tend not to go very far in this world by arguing with guys who are really well-respected and well-liked like Victor Martinez.
The Braves have signed former football player and current outfielder Sanders Commings, an Augusta, Georgia native, to a minor league contract, Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports reports.
Commings, 26, was a defensive back who played for the University of Georgia before being selected by the Chiefs in the fifth round of the 2013 draft. He appeared in two games in the 2013 season.
Commings also played baseball for Westside High School and was selected by the Diamondbacks in the 37th round of the 2008 draft. He chose to attend the University of Georgia instead. When football didn’t pan out, Commings started training with Jerry Hairston, Jr. Hairston said he was “blown away” when he saw Commings hit for the first time.
Obviously, Commings’ path to success as a professional baseball player will be long, but it’s a no-risk flier for the Braves. The club has past experience with football players, including Deion Sanders and Brian Jordan.
The next task for the Braves will be to acquire Ryan Goins from the Blue Jays. That way, players will look at the lineup card each day to see if it’s Commings or Goins.
On Thursday afternoon, Rays pitcher Chris Archer asked his Twitter followers, “Lots swirling around what needs to be changed about the game of baseball. What do y’all want to see changed, if anything, & why?”
Tigers ace Justin Verlander responded:
To that, Archer said:
For what it’s worth, Verlander hasn’t been much of a hitter. In 47 career plate appearances, he has three singles and no extra-base hits. And if the AL did get rid of the DH rule, the Tigers would have nowhere to put Victor Martinez. Verlander, though, would have an easier time pitching to opposing pitchers rather than their DH’s.