Apparently Elliot Johnson fractured the wrist of Yankees catching prospect Francisco Cervelli when he bowled over him at home (see above collision in the picture from the St. Pete Times).
Girardi proceeded to cry about the play and take some swipes at how the Rays have been playing during Spring Training.
"I think it's uncalled for," Girardi said. "It's Spring Training. You get people hurt, and that's what we've got -- we've got Cervelli hurt. I know they had an incident four or five days ago. I'm all for playing hard, but I don't think it's the time when you run over a catcher in Spring Training."
Sorry, Joey. Sorry, we have players who are actually trying to win games in the spring. Maybe your catcher should not have been blocking the plate, you ever think of that? This is reminding me a little of Jason Varitek who likes to stand about 10 feet up the third base line and then whine and cry every time he gets his clock rung. You play the game to win even when it is spring training.
Maddon appears to agree with our viewpoint:
"I loved the hardball," Maddon said. "We're playing it hard, we're playing it right. It was a bang-bang play at the plate. I couldn't tell exactly where the catcher was in regard to the plate. He was trying to score a run right there, and that was part of the game."
As for Elliot Johnson, he says that the play was well received in the dugout and that he was just trying show some hustle and score the run:
"I'm not trying to hurt anybody, especially in a Spring Training game," Johnson said. "I hope he doesn't lose his job. But I'm trying to show these guys what I can do. I'm just trying to score the run. Looking back on it, I'd have to say I'd probably do the same thing." "With the time that I had there, the instinct was to slide and be out, or hit him and see if I could pop the ball loose."
Nobody wants someone to get hurt, but the Rays are trying to establish a winning attitude. To get that winning attitude they have to come to the park ready to play everyday and give 100% effort the whole 9 innings. That goes hand in hand with being a professional. In conclusion, Girardi is soft and yips too much. If he did not like it then maybe he should have had one his pitchers throw at us in the first game of the regular season. Solve it on the field. Don't go mouthing off to the media.
Dear Joey G,