Postscript on Sheff

carmona3.jpgI was up late enough trying to sort out the blow-by-blow account from Sheffield-Carmona that I decided to sleep rather than blog. Besides, pretty much all the relevant quotes and reactions made it into the story. But as Saturday approaches, here’s what we have to look forward to:

It’ll be interesting to see how quickly Bob Watson and the MLB personnel react on this one. Normally, you don’t hear much in the way of discipline handed down on weekends, but they could conceivably move on it now rather than Monday with two more games left to be played this series.

Whenever the discipline is handed down, it leaves Sheffield with what could be an interesting question. He’s close enough to the 500-homer milestone to still get it this year with a good final week (or his first-ever three-homer game, for that matter), but any suspension would likely rule that out until 2009. If he appeals a suspension, he could feasibly hold it off into next season and try to go for 500 now. The downside, of course, is that he’d have to miss time at the start of next season, when the standings reset and the games are a little more important to get off a good start (and haven’t we discovered how important that is).

If you think back to last year, when Sheffield was suspended for allegedly tossing his bat in umpire Greg Gibson’s direction, Sheffield’s comments didn’t help. And then you wonder how his postgame remarks Friday will play into any decisions coming. When last year’s suspensions eventually came down, Jim Leyland was the one who convinced Sheffield to tone down his rhetoric for a little while. With Leyland under suspension Friday, he wasn’t able to say anything to Sheff in the aftermath of the dust-up.

carmona2.jpgIt’s interesting to see how certain players react the first time you see them in a fracas, especially guys you expect could more than hold their own. Miguel Cabrera did a lot of peacemaking from how it looked, including eventually getting Victor Martinez headed towards his own dugout.

Speaking of which, was it just me, or did Andy Marte almost grab Dusty Ryan — thinking a guy Ryan’s size could do some damage — and then let him go when he realized Ryan wasn’t doing anything?

I’m still not sure why Polanco was ejected. Lloyd McClendon was told by the umpiring crew that Polanco was being aggressive, and Brandon Inge was told that someone on the crew saw Polanco throw a punch. I didn’t see it. The one move that could be construed as aggressive was that Polanco went towards Victor Martinez when Martinez started yelling at Sheffield from across the infield. It was to keep Martinez from going back into the fray, by all accounts, but in the heat of the moment, it’s easy to see how that could be misconstrued. Or else I’m missing something that went on away from the TV cameras.

19 Comments

Guys, don’t get me wrong, I admire the career Sheff has had and I was glad to see him join the Tigers (I took a lot of heat for that). He has the record to prove he is a great player.
However, he could have kept his comments to a minimum. To say that when somebody else has success he gets hit. What is that crap? Did he get hit because Cabrera hit two homers?

His comments are what I don’t like. “I’ll fight, I’ve been fighting all my life”. Nice thug talk.

See???? A smart fighter, who has himself under control, will think about what he’s doing, and calmly throw a punch that actually hits something. If you’re going to be an idiot, like Sheff, then pick your spots.

This is just vivid picture of why Sheff doesn’t stay with any one team, too long.

LOL !!! He made a fool out of himself…… By the way….. there’s the door, pal. Go get # 500 with the Mariners!!!

The commissioner’s office had better do something before today’s game. Baseball is an everyday sport and should be governed by an everyday administration.
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Sheffield was wrong, twice. Maybe three times.
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He was spoiling for a fight. Like I said yesterday, I have never EVER, seen a player weild his bat all the way down to 1st basw with him. That was a definite sign of belligerence.
He then instigated the fight.
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Most people tend to become a bit more rational and let their “cooler heads prevail” after calming down and putting some perspective on an incident. Sheffield doesn’t, it usually gets worse with him. The post game comments showed that succinctly. That was the 2nd mistake. Those untempered comments will help to get him suspended for a goodly amount of games
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The third mistake (and actually probabaly the first one), was that Carmona likely wan’t throwing at Sheffield. He may have been keeping him off the plate (that is part of the job description). If he was going to dust anyone after the tater it would have Joyce.
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Sheffield has a massive ego and he may have let that come into play with the Carmona pitch. Sheff has had a very frustrating and disappointing season. He is 2nd or 3rd fiddle in this orchestra and that is a tough pill for him to swallow. He has underperformed and really has not helped the team this year. He has very high expectations (to match opinions) of himself, to be the star and carry the team.
As frustratin as it has been for us to watch, it must be 10 times more frustrating for him to watch the constant 2 hop ground balls, rally killing strikeouts and double plays, and a seemingly limitless amount of infiled popups, that he has delivered this year.
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NHL hockey fans sometimes see at the end of a humiliating playoff loss—-a form of headhunting that is based on frustration, embarrassment and the need to send a message to the other team that we are still alive and kicking.
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What we have seen with the actions of Leyland and Sheffield these last few days reminds me a little of that.
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On another note, I understand what Mac was trying to do with G-Man. And I agreed with it, but there have been some other opinions about leaving him in to get that last out that are good ones. After all, Delucci who was up after Sizemore’s banjo off-field double, has been in as horrible a slump as Curtis has been. Mac had to know that if he brings in a lefty to face him that Wedge counters with a RHB. Why not let Galarraga face the struggling LHB?
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Good point.
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One thing that can’t be taken away (let’s face it the game is meaningless in terms of won/loss), was the fact that G-Man pitched an exceptional game agains a very good ball team in their park. He was sharp and continues to give us something to feel good about going into next year.
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I am repeating myself from last night, but they keep looking for some semblance of a savior out of that bullpen. Let’s give Aquilino Lopez a try. Nobody else has been able to run with it, why not?
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Where is Blaine Neal?

BTW–take a look at the photo above. What is Maggs’ knee doing up that high? I know he doesn’t run like that!

I’ve never acquired the ability to read minds so I can’t say what is or isn’t going on inside Sheffield’s head. He does come from an earlier era of baseball where things were done somewhat differently than they are now, so that’s somthing to consider. He should have avoided the postgame comments, yes, but he was being Gary. And before I get accused of starting a “Let Sheff be Sheff” campaign, I’d like to say that there are cultural differences here in the good ol’ USA and it’s difficult for one culture to project their own thinking onto another. I hope that makes sense, as it goes to what I said last night about a person’s background.
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I didn’t think Carmona was throwing at him.
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I saw no evidence on the tape of any member of Detroit’s bullpen entering the fray. Is that true? I guess I come from a different era myself because I thought that was an automatic. Sure it’s silly, but it’s what you do. So I have to ask, what exactly IS this bullpen doing for us?
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I was trying to remember any teams that had to make over an entire pen in one offseason and the 1967/68 Tigers came to mind. The ’67 squad featured Wickersham, Aguirre, Podres, Sherry and the like. Those guys were shown the door in favor of Patterson, Warden, Lasher, Dobson and Hiller, the latter three having been with the ’67 team in varying capacities. The club wanted more strikeout pitchers and it seems to have worked out.
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A more recent occurence I suppose would be the White Sox.
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–Rich

Cab, on the other hand, really seems to have a knack for handling himself well. He is such a likable personality. Good humour, easy-going, hard player, good with teammates. He seems to have it all. Played the peacemaker with class last night. Practically lifted Martinez off the ground and carried him away. He’s the real deal and I don’t think the money is going to spoil him either.
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Maybin is hitting over .800 for the Marlins. 9 for 11 with 8 straight hits! I only mention this because he did it. No inferences on the trade or anything like it. You gotta be happy with Cab no matter where Maybin takes his career.

Another point to make about Cab is how well he has handled the move to first base. Psycologically as well. That couldn’t have been easy for him to handle the change in team and league adjustment on top of essentially being told he wasn’t good enough to play 3rd.
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Back when the switch was made the suggestion was that Cab wasn’t playing as well as they had hoped for at 3rd. I suggest that the switch may have been more about how Carlos was not playing they way they had hoped he would at 1st. He was looking like he was going to get injured over there.
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I still think Cab would have been more than adequate at 3rd. He was playing with a bad quad, and I think that obviously restricted a lot of his movement. I don’t think it was a brilliant baseball analysis by Leyland but more that they accidentally found themselves a very good first baseman. I have been very impressed with how he has mastered the bag at 1st. He digs out a lot of in between hops and makes all the plays on anything hit to him. He no longer roams over into Polanco’s territory either.
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It’d be great to see him finish above .300

In the 8th last night why wasn’t Joyce pinch- hit for against Perez? Obviously Mac was playing left/right pitching matchups with our bullpen so why didn’t he bring in Hessman or any righty for Joyce? Not only that but Larrish was on deck when he struck out. That didn’t make sense to me.

Make that the 9th inning last night, not the 8th.

I thought the same. Joyce is close to an automatic out against a LHP. On top of that he has no long ball potential left for this season. I thought Marcus but apparently he was not with the team due to personal reasons, but Hessman was a logical alternative, for that matter I guess even Raburn. We “gave”them an out there, something you cannot afford to do in a tight ballgame.
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Somehow Mac over- managed and under-managed in the same game!

For the last time this year I must apologize for my numerous typos.

And you knew if we didn’t get at least one run in the 9th the game was probably going to be over by the bottom of the inning, and it was. It’s so expected now that I never get mad about it anymore. Everyone wants to rag on Leyland, and he has made alot of bad moves this year, but he is playing the cards he has and they are not performing. They even got Farnsworth to help and he’s been a big disappointment.

I would think that Sheff might want to take the suspension now and get it overwith when the games don’t count. Is Dave Dombrowski here on this trip. Would he maybe talk to Gary Sheffield about it. Why would he want to wait until next year when the games count?

By the way I definately think Carmona was throwing at Sheffield. It was a fastball and he meant to hit him. He had perfect control all night. I watched the whole game and he had great control in the strike zone all night long. He was throwing at Sheffield for sure.

I agree, I’m not a Sheff fan but Carmona isn’t innocent. I too watched the whole game and he was just as guilty, he stared Sheff down as he was walking to first. He was very accurate all night until he hit Sheff. I think they both have a major attitude towards each other from the past. Also in regard to Rich’s comments above I believe it was a total benches clearly tussle including both bullpens.

Halladay got his 19th in Toronto. Pedroia went 1 x 4.
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I wonder if we could trade Sheff for Carmona?
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There’s one thing I like about Sheff…….you either like him or you don’t.
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I hope JV throws a no-hitter today against these guys. It’s OK if he plunks Choo though!

I love Sheffield. At least he sticks up for himself and won’t back down from anybody. He’s also never afraid to speak his mind and say exactly how he feels. He plays with a lot of passion. I can’t wait to watch the game tonight.

JV is known for being a little wild. I’m sure it would be an accident like Carmona’s was last night.

I just looked at the video again (more time now) and yep, our bullpen was in there. Glad to see that.
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Verlander is bound to come in high and tight on somebody tonight, either intentionally or unintentionally, and that bears watching. :-)
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–Rich

I also agree I do think that Carmona was throwing at Sheffield. He did have pin point control all night and he also has a history of throwing at him. It is just to bad that the pen had to blow the game again.
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And I have seen Sheff get hit a lot in the last few years and I have never seen him get that angry. So I have to believe that he truly thought that Carmona was throwing at him. I have seen him giving the stare down but never anything like that from him. This is becoming quite a rivalry. Too bad we are on the short end of the winning end of hit

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