Jimmy Rollins’ lack of hustle, that is, not Cholly’s. Cholly is sneaky-fast:
Manuel chastised Rollins for not running out a ground ball in the sixth inning of Wednesday’s 9-2 loss in Miami.
“We have two rules: Hustle and be on time,” Manuel said later. “That’s all I have to say. This is between Jimmy and me.”
Manuel said he thought about benching Rollins for Thursday night’s game but decided against it because he believed the meeting was productive.
I’m gonna guess that the meeting ended with Manuel saying something like “get me? or “so, we jake?”
More seriously: a player not running out a ground ball in the closing stages of a profoundly disappointing season is the sort of thing the newspaper and talk radio guys go crazy on, so you sort of have to make a point to look like you’re addressing thing, but a couple of things are worth considering: (1) there are probably several instances a week in which a player on any team doesn’t run out a ground ball; and (2) a veteran who has a history of leg injuries is someone you probably don’t mind taking it easy once in a while, especially in a game that is out of hand.
Not that that will change anything. When it comes to the politics of hustle, the “it’s ok not to run everything out” position is going to lose every single time.
A brutal couple of updates on the night of Jose Fernandez’s death from Jeff Passan of Yahoo and from Andre Fernandez of the Miami Herald.
Passan reports on the leadup to the fateful boat trip. About how a friend of one of the other men killed on the boat had pleaded with him not to go out in the dark. Then there’s this:
After Saturday’s game, Fernandez had asked a number of teammates to join him on the boat. One by one, they declined.
Marcell Ozuna was one of them. Andre Fernandez of the Miami Herald reports:
Following Monday’s game, Ozuna said he turned down an invitation from Fernandez after Saturday night’s game to go out with him and join him for a spin on his boat . . . “That night I told him, ‘Don’t go out,’” Ozuna said. “Everybody knew he was crazy about that boat and loved being out on the water. I told him I couldn’t go out that night because I had the kids and my wife waiting for me.
Losing a friend and teammate under such circumstances is brutal enough. Adding on survivor’s guilt would be close to impossible to bear.
David Ortiz has used Derek Jeter’s Player’s Tribune as his personal podium all year as he says goodbye to the Major Leagues. He continues that today, on the eve of his final series against the Yankees.
In it Ortiz talks about what playing the Yankees meant to him over the course of his career. About how the fan hate was real but something he embraced. About how the series back in the days of Jeter and Pettitte and Mariano and Mussina were “wars.” He also talks about how the Yankees were basically everything when he was growing up in the Dominican Republic. The only caps and shirts you saw were Yankees shirts and how they were about the only team you could see on TV there. As such, coming to Boston and then playing against the Yankees was a big, big deal.
Ortiz says “[s]ome players are born to be Yankees, you know what I’m saying? I was born to play against the Yankees.”
And he’ll get to do it only three more times.