09 March 2008


The man who says that Joe Girardi is "like a son to me", thinks that Joe G. is wrong for complaining about Elliot Johnson plowing over Francisco Cervelli, breaking is right wrist.

Ex-Yank bench coach Don Zimmer says: "I can't believe that he went after it the way he did. That's not Joe Girardi. Girardi was a catcher in the big leagues and should know better. You block the plate. If I slide into him and break a leg, nothing is said. Instead of breaking my leg I bowl him over and it's not the right play? Well, to me it's the right play, spring training or no spring training. Play the game the right way. To me, our kid played it the way he thought it was right, and I think it was right."

Dirtbag Rays manager Joe Maddon added: "Just like I said Saturday, it was a good, hard baseball play. We have to play the game one way all the time. That's the way we do things. It's really unfortunate that kid got hurt. ... Nobody wants to hurt anyone under those circumstances. This does not deserve any legs. It was an issue that occurred in a game. It was a hard play. The issue was based on whether he should do that in spring training or not, so it's a philosophical difference."

Joe G. today says: "It's just disheartening. It's spring training, I just don't understand. I told all my players to play hard, but when you do something like that you take your chances that you will get someone hurt. To me, it's a non-issue right now. We're beyond that. Sometimes opinions are going to vary."

Notice he said "right now"?

And finally Shelley Duncan chimed in with: "There's going to be no evil intent to carry over, but what it does just adds a different type of fire to your gut when you play that team. You understand how they're playing the game and what their mind-set is."

So if he's attempting to score when the teams play again, will he slide and try to avoid contact with the catcher?

"I don't know," Duncan said. "That will be determined in between third and home."

I have a feeling it's already been determined.

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