In the 8th inning of last night’s blowout, Mark Melancon hit Dustin Pedroia on the shoulder with a pitch, a few pitches after throwing wildly over Pedroia’s head. Dustin was not pleased, barking at Melancon as Posada escorted the diminutive second baseman to first. Here is what the principals had to say:
“I don’t know,” Pedroia said after the game. “It’s kind of surprising, obviously. It goes over your head, that’s really nothing to mess around with. I don’t know. I don’t know why they’d be throwing at me, if they were. Especially in that situation. It’s a blowout. That’s fine.”
The Yankees led 13-4 when the right-handed reliever Melancon hit Pedroia in the eighth inning.
“Of course, when you get hit I’m sure it hurts,” Melancon said. “But if he thought there was any intention of me throwing at him, he’s wrong. There’s no intention by me to hit him. I mean, we’re up eight runs at the time. I’m just trying to throw strikes and get outs.”
Both Yankees manager Joe Girardi and Red Sox manager Terry Francona came onto the field after the play.
“Our guy was trying to go inside… and it was very unfortunate we hit him,” Girardi said. “It’s 13-4, we’re not trying to hit anyone.”
I doubt that Melancon was throwing at Pedroia on purpose. There would have been no reason for it, and it does not seem to be in Melancon’s nature. Furthermore, if you wanted to hit somebody, you likely would not do it on the 7th pitch of an at-bat, after allowing the batter to swing at a number of your pitches. It just does not add up. The fact of the matter is that Melancon threw 28 pitches, with only 16 going for strikes. He was wild, and a few pitches got away from him. If I had to guess, Pedroia was just trying to get his team emotionally invested in the series, as they are in a funk and need something to help them out of it. We will see if Josh Beckett takes the cue when he steps on the hill this evening.
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