Torii Hunter: Joe West “had dinner reservations”
Torii Hunter was in a pretty good mood when Monday started. After seriously contemplating retirement at season’s end, he was back with the Twins, making his return to Comerica Park, and batting cleanup behind Joe Mauer.
He was less pleased by game’s end. While Brad Ausmus’ move to pull David Price for Joe Nathan drew its share of critiquing among the sellout crowd of 45,030, Nathan’s game-ending strikeout drew a heavy amount of second-guessing from Hunter, who was called on a check swing by plate umpire Joe West without an appeal to first.
“I think he had dinner reservations or a concert to play in,” Hunter said. “That was terrible. All I ask, everybody asks, we come out and do our job every day. That’s what I do, I come ready to play, do my job, I battle at the plate. We ask you to do your job as well. And Joe West needs to do his job. And he didn’t do it well.”
It was a slider from Nathan, and a pretty decent one at that. He got a first-pitch swing and miss from Hunter on a fastball, registered at 94 on the Comerica Park radar gun, and worked his way off the plate.
“I thought he swung, so I said he swung,” West told a pool reporter. “They’re all great players, and any time you get called out at the end of the game on something like that, they’re going to be upset, so I understand that.”
Also, West said he did not have dinner reservations.