illustrations by Samara Pearlstein
You think you can just keep running Brad Penny out there for day games, Jim Leyland? Well, you cannot. Brad Penny has reached his limit. He has started 21 games this season, and 14 of them have been day games, including the last 4 in a row. That is enough. Brad Penny’s willingness to roast himself in the harsh rays of the summer sun has been whittled down into oblivion.
He made his dissatisfaction plain by doing, in the Thursday game, the following:
–Giving up 7 runs, all earned.
–Giving up a home run and a triple to Mark Trumbo alone.
–Failing to make it out of the 4th inning, and managing to throw 74 pitches in that time.
–Screaming at Victor Martinez when Victor attempted to come out to the mound to discuss why Penny suddenly could not get Angels out.
–Posturing belligerently when Victor refused to meekly retreat back behind the plate, forcing Jeff Jones to lumber out to intervene, and causing Carlos Guillen to physically place himself between pitcher and catcher because the angry yelling and gesturing was making him nervous.
What do you have to say for yourself, Mr. Penny?
Me and Victor have been friends for a while now, and that happens when you’re competing.
It had nothing to do with pitch selection or anything like that. With a runner on second, I like to come set taking signs. That way, the hitter can’t look at second base and anything there. I’ve pitched my whole career that way, and [Martinez] didn’t want me to do it.
All righty then. Penny and VMart got along well in Boston, and Penny was supposedly happy to have the chance to work with Victor again when they both landed in Detroit. And really, how could anyone be angry with Victor? He is practically hugs personified.
It’s clear that all the sunlight is getting to Penny. Let the man pitch a few night games in a row, cool his brainpan down, give him a chance to stop slathering himself in so much sunscreen that he’s leaving the ball greasy, etc.
Also in this game: Jim Leyland was ejected for no particular reason (aside from the ongoing War With the Umpires, of course); Austin Jackson had an actual hit-by-pitch that the umpires decided was a phantom-hit-by-pitch; and David Purcey vomited all over the mound, then peed in the vomit, then lay down and passed out in it. But we shall not speak of these things.
Instead we shall speak of this quote, coming to us from writer Chris Vannini:
Avila comes out for BP. Leyland says “What are you doing? You have the day off. Go get a massage or something … You got smoked yesterday.”
There is only one possible reaction to this.
That’s all for a few days, as I will have reduced connectivity while in the Midwest. Remember to search for RotT if you’ll be at the Saturday or Sunday games, and get yourselves ready, because I will have a super special blog post treat for you cats upon my return.