Major League Baseball quote “suspended” Red Sox pitcher Ryan Dempster 5 games, and fined him $2,500 for intentionally throwing at Alex Rodriguez in the second inning of Sunday’s game. However, Dempster’s suspension is WITH pay, and because of the Red Sox schedule situation, won’t even miss his turn in the rotation. That’s harsh.
Baseball’s suspension of Dempster is an absolute joke and sends a terrible message to the rest of baseball. Yes Dempster pays a small financial penalty of $2,500, but in no way is he really paying the price for his actions. On Sunday, Dempster tried not once, but twice to plunk A-Rod and when he finally executed, the count was 3-0. There has probably never been a more blatant incident of a pitcher hitting a batter in the history of the game.
Following today’s Yankees game, CC Sabathia, who opposed Dempster on Sunday gave his thoughts on the suspension, “I thought he at least should miss a start and he’s not going to do that. I don’t think it does anything,” he said.
CC is 100 percent right and what this suspension says is that it’s not a big deal to intentionally throw at other players, so any pitcher can now throw at A-Rod, and face essentially no consequences for doing so.
Baseball cannot have that. The game should have given Dempster a minimum of 10 games WITHOUT pay, and a fine in the $20,000 area. That would have been appropriate for what Dempster did. Again, it was blatantly obvious Dempster hit A-Rod on purpose. But no, baseball just wagged their finger at Dempster basically saying, “Bad boy.”
Yankees manager Joe Girardi has a big problem with pitchers intentionally throwing at opposing players, “That baseball is a weapon. It’s not a tennis ball. It’s a weapon, and it can do a lot of damage to someone’s life, and that’s why I was so upset about it,” he said. Girardi was fined $5,000 for arguing why Dempster wasn’t rightfully ejected.
Hopefully the end result of this suspension is pitchers stop intentionally throwing at A-Rod. But based on the way baseball disciplines its players, it seems there’s no end in sight.