Adrian Gonzalez is really, really happy to be back in California. And he’s comfortable enough there to throw some bombs back in Boston’s direction. Dylan Hernandez of the L.A. Times reports:
As for why the Boston media didn’t take to him, he said, “They didn’t like that I was a calm person. I won’t throw my helmet, I won’t scream, I won’t use bad words if I strike out. That’s what they want over there … They took me over there and I didn’t change. My intensity, how I prepared, everything was the same. When they took me over there, they took me over there to drive in runs. And I did that.”
I’ll agree that the Boston media prefers it when guys are more interesting, but unless I missed something I never sensed that anyone had it in for Gonzalez especially. He caught heat, understandably so, with that whole Kelly Shoppach/text message fiasco. When he had a poor first half of this season it was noted. But it’s not like he had people down on him like Beckett or Crawford or Buchholz or anyone.
It was obviously not a good fit for him, both culturally and competitively — Hernandez notes how the Green Monster hurt Gonzalez instead of helped him like many thought it would — but there are guys who have gotten a way harder time thrown their way in Boston than Gonzalez. Indeed, if it wasn’t for the opportunity to dump Beckett and Crawford in this deal, it seems like Boston may very well have wanted to keep him around.
On Friday, tension between the Orioles and Red Sox rose when Manny Machado spiked Dustin Pedroia sliding into second base. Although the umpires found no fault with Machado’s slide, third base coach Brian Butterfield was later ejected, still feeling like Machado wronged the Red Sox. Pedroia exited the game and was not in the lineup on Saturday or Sunday. He’ll undergo an MRI for his left knee and ankle in Boston on Monday.
For what it’s worth, Pedroia didn’t seem to feel any bitterness towards Machado for his slide. As MLB.com’s Jeff Seidel reported, Pedroia said, “I don’t even know what the rule is. I’ve turned the best double play in the Major Leagues for 11 years. I don’t need a … rule. The rule’s irrelevant. The rule’s for people with bad footwork.”
Tempers flared between the Red Sox and Orioles again on Sunday. In the bottom of the eighth inning with a runner on first base and one out with the Red Sox leading 6-0, reliever Matt Barnes threw a first-pitch fastball up-and-in to Machado. The ball actually hit Machado’s bat, so it counted as a foul ball. Home plate umpire Andy Fletcher ejected Barnes and the Red Sox brought in Joe Kelly. Machado doubled on the first pitch Kelly threw to put the Orioles on the board, but the Orioles ultimately lost 6-2.
MASN’s broadcast later showed Pedroia talking to Machado, seemingly clarifying that Barnes acted of his own volition without encouragement from Pedroia. “You know that,” Pedroia appeared to say. “It wasn’t me. It’s them.”
Commissioner Rob Manfred will likely look into Sunday’s incident. He could fine and/or suspend Barnes.
The Orioles and Red Sox meet again in Boston for a four-game series May 1-4. It will be interesting to see if the tension still remains then.
The Mariners made a handful of roster moves on Sunday afternoon. Ryan Divish of the Seattle Times reports. The club optioned pitcher Chase De Jong to Triple-A Tacoma, designated outfielder Leonys Martin for assignment, and recalled first baseman Dan Vogelbach and pitcher Chris Heston from Triple-A.
Martin, 29, struggled to start the season, batting .111/.172/.130 in 58 plate appearances. As Divish noted, Martin was very popular with his teammates in Seattle, so the move was particularly difficult. He is owed the remainder of his $4.85 million salary, making it likely that he’ll clear waivers.
De Jong, 23, struggled in 4 2/3 innings of relief, yielding three runs on three hits and three walks with two strikeouts.
Heston, 29, got off to a good start with Tacoma, putting up a 3.18 ERA over his first three starts.
Vogelbach, 24, was hitting .309/.409/.473 with a pair of home runs in 66 PA with Tacoma, encouraging his call-up.