Phillies shortstop Jimmy Rollins drove a 10th-inning Dan Jennings pitch over the left field wall at Citizens Bank Park on Saturday night to give his club a 5-4 walkoff win over the visiting Marlins. As Rollins trotted out of the batter’s box to begin his celebratory stroll around the bases he appeared to shout a few words at his own dugout. Turns out, he was actually jawing at a fan — a Phillies fan, presumably — who was sitting in the first couple of rows and had been rudely heckling him throughout his decisive at-bat.
Jim Salisbury of CSNPhilly.com has more ….
At first glance, it appeared as if Rollins might have been emoting toward his teammates. But upon further review, Rollins was giving an earful to a heckler in the box seats.
“Some fan in the stands popping off,” Rollins said. “He was right behind our dugout. He was close enough to yell, and he pissed me off, honestly.”
Rollins said the fan said “something pretty ignorant” after the first pitch of the at-bat. He would not expound.
But Rollins had no qualms recounting what he said to the fan as he broke from the batter’s box.
“I very politely told him to shut the F up,” Rollins said.
And that’s just the way he said it.
“He started chirping right after my first swing,” Rollins said. “I wanted to do it right when he said it, but I still had an at-bat to get through.
“You hear it a lot. A lot of times you want to say something back. This time I was able to.”
Rollins was pressed as to what the fan said that made him so angry.
Again, he would not expound.
Rollins, 35, is batting .316/.395/.553 with seven runs and 10 RBI in nine games played this season.
The Astros remain in contact with the Athletics on starting pitcher Sonny Gray, Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports reports. The Astros have added Charlie Morton this offseason, but the club has been trying to add a big-name starting pitcher to put at the top of the rotation behind Dallas Keuchel.
Gray, 27, was limited to 22 starts in the 2016 season due to a forearm issue. His stats left a lot to be desired, as he finished with a 5-11 record, a 5.69 ERA, and a 94/42 K/BB ratio over 117 innings. Considering how Gray pitched in the previous three years, he’s a good bet to bounce back.
Gray is under team control through 2019, which is a big draw for the Astros. Needless to say, the Athletics would want a haul in terms of prospects. Gray will earn $3.575 million in 2017, having avoided arbitration in his first year of eligibility.
As we noted last week, The Chicago Cubs took the unusual step of not waiting until the summer after winning the World Series to make their customary White House visit to meet the president. They did it today, seeing President Obama a few short days before he leaves office.
Despite the fact that Obama is a White Sox fan, he met the Cubs with diplomacy and grace. It’s almost as if he’s been in that business for the past eight years. In return, he was given some gifts by the Cubs: Theo Epstein presented Obama with a No. 44 Cubs jersey, a tile from the center field scoreboard at Wrigley Field, and a lifetime pass to Wrigley as well.
Obama is staying in D.C. after he leaves office this week, hanging around so his daughter can finish high school in the same place she started. Even so, he’s likely going to be back to Chicago a good bit over the rest of his life, so he’ll likely be able to put the free pass to work. Assuming it comes with, like, six companion passes for his Secret Service detail.