You’ll recall last Thursday that things got chippy between the Braves and the Rockies. This after Corey Dickerson accidentally hit Gerald Laird with his backswing, knocking him out of the game. Braves pitcher David Carpenter took offense to that accident for reasons known only to him and hit Dickerson. After that both sides were warned, though plunkings and ejections still continued.
Nick Masset of the Colorado Rockies has received a three-game suspension and an undisclosed fine for intentionally throwing a pitch at Evan Gattis of the Atlanta Braves, with a warning in place, in the top of the ninth inning of the Thursday, June 12th game at Coors Field in Denver . . . In addition, Braves pitcher David Carpenter has received an undisclosed fine for intentionally throwing at Colorado’s Corey Dickerson in the bottom of the eighth inning, which resulted in warnings for both sides.
Small sanctions, especially for pitchers, but the league has to do something in situations like this. I would have liked to see Carpenter suspended, however. Even if his throwing at Dickerson was pre-warning, it was clearly premeditated. And uncalled for, even under the dumb unwritten rules.
The big presidential pardon news today concerns the commutation of Chelsea Manning’s sentence. We’ll leave that aside. For our purposes, know that someone in the world of baseball was pardoned: Willie McCovey.
Yes, Hall of Famer Willie McCovey, who in 1995 pleaded guilty to income tax fraud related to the non-reporting of income received from memorabilia and autograph shows. Duke Snider pleaded guilty alongside McCovey. They were given two years probation and fines of $5,000. Snider died in 2011. McCovey still works with the San Francisco Giants as a senior advisor and goodwill ambassador.
President Obama’s release of McCovey’s pardon was pretty succinct. But it’s enough to scrub the record of one of the greatest sluggers of all time.
Rangers reliever Jake Diekman will have surgery on January 25 to help alleviate ulcerative colitis, an inflammatory bowel disease. As a result, the lefty will miss at least half of the 2017 regular season, Jeff Wilson of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram reports. Diekman was diagnosed with the illness when he was 11 years old. He has brought awareness to the Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation of America with a “Gut It Out” campaign.
Diekman, who turns 30 years old on Saturday, finished the 2016 campaign with a 3.40 ERA and a 59/26 K/BB ratio in 53 innings. He came to the Rangers from the Phillies in the Cole Hamels trade on July 31, 2015.
The Rangers and Diekman avoided arbitration last Friday, agreeing to a $2.55 million salary for the 2017 season.