Welcome to San Diego. I can’t speak for all Padres fans but I’m pretty excited that you’re here. It’s not often that a team falls out of contention yet still adds a dynamic player to the roster at the trade deadline. Your presence will definitely make the remainder of 2013 more palatable and should serve to give the downtrodden fans of San Diego some sense of optimism moving forward. Then in 2014, having solidified your place in the rotation, who knows – perhaps you can give the Padres a chance at a post-season run.
I hate the D-backs so I can’t say that I followed your fantastic 2011 season very thoroughly but I can recall you easily mowing down Padres hitters with precision during each one of your starts. But really, who couldn’t destroy that 2011 Padres line-up, am I right? Two words: Orlando Hudson*. Ha ha. You know what I’m talking about.
This open letter is more than just a welcome note though. I know you’ll do great here but I have a request. Look, I don’t want to tell you how to do your job, so I’ll be honest with you right now and acknowledge reality – I could never ever do what you do. I mean, I turn in bed the wrong way and my shoulder feels like it’s gonna fall off – it’s ridiculous. Again – the utmost admiration for your skills as a professional baseball player.
But . . .
If you’re gonna hit a batter as an act of retribution on behalf of a teammate could you please not throw at your opponent’s head?
Clearly I’m referencing the incident earlier this year against Los Angeles when you hit Yasiel Puig in the nose and then bounced one off of Zack Greinke’s dome. Man, I hate the Dodgers too, but establishing who controls the inner third of the plate or sending a much needed message must be exacted in a way that won’t kill someone. I can’t stand Zack Greinke but throwing above his shoulders back in early June was just bush league. Again, not trying to tell you how to do your job but you need to get command of your message.
I have two daughters and the last thing I want to do is explain to them why a batter from the Giants or Dodgers is laying motionless in a pool of blood. I mean, seeing a player convulsing in their own blood was cool back in 1994 when EA Sports added that feature to their hockey game but that shit wasn’t real man – it was pretend. I can shield my daughters from seeing little Wayne Gretzky’s head bleed but watching you pitch in real time on FSSD is another story.
Look I’m not a pacifist. In fact, if I had an arm like yours I’d hit guys all the time. But I’d do it in a way that let the batter know who was the boss while also allowing their cognitive abilities to remain in tact so they could actually think about how I was the boss. Crap – I’m totally telling you how to do your job. I’m sorry. Just keep it below the shoulders buddy. Do it for the kids.
Best of luck.
*Interchangeable two word names: Brad Hawpe, Jorge Cantu, Jason Bartlett, Alberto Gonzalez, Rob Johnson, Kyle Phillips, or Eric Patterson.
I contribute to Padres Public on Thursday mornings and when I’m feeling particularly inspired. I can also be found on twitter at @AvengingJM where I try not to be a #*@$ towards people. The dusty archives of AJM are located at avengingjm.blogspot.com