Wednesday, August 6, 2008

B.J. loafs; B.J. sits

Cleveland pitcher Edward Mujica fell to his knees and almost flopped in front of the mound as he tried to field a come-backer from B.J. Upton in the eighth inning Tuesday night.

And Upton lollygagged to first base.

You know that makes him?

A lollygagger.

And you know what happens to lollygagger’s on Joe Maddon’s watch? They sit.

Upton was benched Wednesday against Celveland, his punishment for not running out a grounder to the pitcher. With a little hustle he might have actually beaten Mujica’s throw. After all, the pitcher was throwing from his knees.

It was a bold statement from Maddon, who really needed Upton in a lineup Wednesday that was more JV than varsity.

Ben Zobrist made his major league debut in center field. Willy Aybar, cramps and all, was back at shortstop. The corner outfield was manned by Eric Hinske in left and Gabe Gross in right.

This isn’t the time to be playing games with the lineup Rays three-games up on second-place Boston, but Maddon felt he needed to make a point.

Personally, I think Upton takes plays off, both in the outfield and at the plate.

I don’t think I’m alone.

What bothered Maddon more than Upton dogging it was Maddon ripped into the team after a win in Kansas City on July 26 because he felt saw a little too much dogging going on.

And less than two weeks later Upton lollygags to first?

We’re in the thick of the pennant race now. No time to be playing games.

And that’s why Maddon had to bench Upton.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Maddon made a statement and it was the right one.
More managers need to take back leadership of their teams and stop letting 'Mannys be Mannys'.