Vicente Padilla fired back at Mark Teixeira after Saturday’s Yankees-Red Sox doublelehader, saying his former Rangers teammate is “scared to face me” and claiming “he’d be better off playing a women’s sport.”
Teixeira said Friday that Padilla “doesn’t have too many friends in the game” and suggested that he be suspended for his head-hunting.
Padilla responded in a Spanish-language interview on NESN:
“The problem is he talks about all the wrong things that others have done, but the things he’s done — against the Latinos [on the Rangers] — he doesn’t open his mouth about,” Padilla said. “He once threatened me and said he was going to hit me with a bat, and that’s when we were playing on the same team.
“And then, he also had problems with Frank Francisco, our closer back then. But he doesn’t talk about that, does he? Then, of course, he goes on and makes those comments about me.”
It sounds like Padilla has some legitimate beefs with Teixeira, but he’s not going into detail here. Plus, whatever the beef, his closing comments won’t go over well.
“In this sport, as competitive ball players, we get pretty fired up,” Padilla said. “So I think, maybe, [Teixeira] picked the wrong profession. I think he’d be better off playing a women’s sport.”
Just a guess here, but Padilla probably doesn’t watch a lot of women’s sports.
Mets right-hander Matt Harvey is heading to the bullpen, according to comments made by club manager Mickey Callaway on Saturday. As predicted, Harvey doesn’t appear to be taking the news particularly well, going so far as to tell Callaway that the decision has him “at a 10 with being pissed off” and that he’s motivated to prove himself as a starter.
It’s been rough going for Harvey this spring. After missing significant time to a shoulder injury last season, the 29-year-old righty returned to the mound with a lot left to prove. He pitched to an 0-2 record in four starts, issuing 14 runs, four home runs and 17 strikeouts in 21 innings. It’s been a while since the Mets have seen anything better out of their starter — he hasn’t turned in a sub-4.00 ERA since 2015 and hasn’t pitched well enough to earn an All-Star berth since 2013 — and now it appears they’re at the end of their rope.
At this point, the Mets insist that the shift is a temporary one. While Callaway has helped successfully convert several starters to the bullpen, including Trevor Bauer and Carlos Carrasco, that’s not the plan for this veteran right-hander. Instead, both the team and Harvey seem to view the change as a way to clear up any mental blocks Harvey may be encountering on the mound. “We know he’s healthy,” assistant GM John Ricco told reporters. “He’s feeling good. Then you get to, is this a little bit of a mental thing, a confidence thing? One of the things we talk about is getting him into the ‘pen, where he can have success in short spurts, get that confidence back and really let it go and get back to being a guy who can dominate the way he’s shown in the past.”
Harvey will be eligible to pitch out of the bullpen on Tuesday, when the Mets are scheduled to kick off their next road series against the Cardinals. As for his replacement, left-hander Jason Vargas will resume his role in the rotation when he comes off the disabled list next Saturday.