Jimmy Rollins dedicates walkoff homer to heckler


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.

Chris Sale exits game with hip contusion

Chris Sale
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Red Sox left-hander Chris Sale made a hasty exit from his final Grapefruit League outing on Saturday after sustaining a left hip contusion. He was struck on the leg with a line drive from the Astros’ J.D. Davis in the first inning and immediately collapsed on the mound. He was able to walk off the field without a noticeable limp, however, and later told reporters that the ball struck a nerve and temporarily stunned his leg. As a precautionary move, the Red Sox pulled him after the incident and will have the left-hander undergo X-rays to rule out any further injury to his hip.

This was expected to be Sale’s last start of spring training. Prior to Saturday’s matinee against the Astros, the 28-year-old southpaw made three starts in camp, allowing five runs, one home run, three walks and striking out 18 batters in 14 innings. He’s still on track to start the season for the Red Sox during their road opener against the Rays next Thursday.