Eric Hinske isn’t wasting any time going from playing to coaching, joining new Cubs manager Rick Renteria’s staff as first base coach.
Hinske played for the Diamondbacks this year, hitting .173 in 52 games to finish up a 12-season career in which he won a Rookie of the Year award and then went on to play for seven different teams. He was released by Arizona in July.
Hinske was originally drafted by the Cubs in 1998, but never played for Chicago because he was traded to the A’s for Miguel Cairo in 2001 (and then later traded to the Blue Jays for Billy Koch that same year).
The Diamondbacks have activated third baseman Eric Chavez from the disabled list. In a corresponding roster move, they have designated Eric Hinske for assignment.
Chavez, 35, had been sidelined with a strained right oblique since the end of May. The injury interrupted a fantastic first two months. Facing right-handed pitching almost exclusively, Chavez hit .325/.368/.588. In his stead, Martin Prado took over every day at third base, starting every game between May 31 and June 22.
Hinske, also 35, was not enjoying his 2013 season. Usually a reliable bat off the bench, he carries a meager .173/.259/.288 slash line, including just nine hits in 45 trips to the plate as a pinch-hitter. This marks his second consecutive season of subpar offense but good lefty bench bats are hard to find, so it wouldn’t be surprising to see Hinske get a shot with another team.
Eric Hinske received a five-game suspension following the big Dbacks-Dodgers brawl a couple of weeks ago. Many thought it was unjust as Hinske never threw a punch and was, by most accounts, trying to be a peacemaker. Apparently that argument carried some weight at the league office:
That’s a pretty significant reduction. Normally a game or two is shaved off on appeal. You have to figure that MLB realized that they blew that one.
MLB handed down suspensions yesterday for Tuesday’s benches-clearing brawl between the Diamondbacks and Dodgers, with Arizona’s Ian Kennedy receiving a 10-game suspension and Eric Hinske getting five games. J.P. Howell and Skip Schumaker both got two games on the Dodgers’ side of things while Ronald Belisario served his one-game suspension last night.
There was some frustration from the Diamondbacks’ side about the punishments levied by MLB, especially in regard to Hinske, who appeared to attempt to play peacemaker. Zack Greinke ended up only being fined for his involvement, despite hitting Miguel Montero in the back with a pitch in retaliation for Kennedy hitting Yasiel Puig in the face in the previous inning. Unwritten rules can sure be silly sometimes. And as we saw from Kennedy later throwing in the direction of Greinke’s head, they are also potentially very dangerous.
While we’re now four days removed from the brawl, Montero’s comments to Jack Magruder of FOX Sports Arizona indicates that emotions are still running pretty high.
Montero said he did not expect to be hit but also did not want to start anything afterward.
“The last thing I wanted to do was get suspended. I know he’s a little chicken(expletive). I didn’t want to fight,” Montero said of Greinke.
Oh boy. You can listen to the full context of Montero’s comments here. There are some pretty good gems in there, including him referring to Puig and Clayton Kershaw as “golden boys.”
As you learned earlier this afternoon, Major League Baseball doled out suspensions as expected for the Dodgers’ and Diamondbacks’ participation in Tuesday night’s fracas. There weren’t too many surprises, though as Craig noted, Yasiel Puig and Zack Greinke were not suspended at all, receiving only fines. On the D-Back side of things, Eric Hinske received a five-game suspension, which was shocking both to Hinske himself and to teammate Brandon McCarthy, who tweeted about it:
As for Hinske, he maintains his innocence. Via Nick Piecoro: