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September 19, 2010

Guthrie answers Girardi's questions about plunking Yankees

The most interesting part of Saturday’s 11-3 pounding of the Orioles by the New York Yankees probably occurred with the game’s first pitch.

Orioles starter Jeremy Guthrie plunked Yankees’ leadoff hitter Derek Jeter in the left elbow (and not bat, by the way).

It was the 45th time Guthrie has faced Jeter in his career – the most plate appearances against Guthrie by any big leaguer – and the first time Guthrie has ever hit Jeter.

But it was the 10th time Guthrie has plunked a Yankee in the 15 games he has pitched against them. That doesn’t include a preseason contest on March 29 of this year when Guthrie hit two more (Mark Teixeira and Francisco Cervelli).

Guthrie has now plunked 37 batters in his career and 10 of them have been Yankees in 15 games. In comparison, he’s also pitched against the Tampa Bay Rays and Boston Red Sox 15 times. He’s hit one player each from both of those teams.

After the 10 plunked Yankees, the next team he has hit the most is the Chicago White Sox, five hit batters in 10 games.

Yankees manager Joe Girardi isn’t amused about Guthrie’s propensity to hit Yankees.

“Too many, just too many,” Girardi said. “I just really don’t understand it and I know he likes to pitch inside, but it’s too many. And that doesn’t include the ones in spring training.”

For the record, Guthrie is second in the American League with 14 hit batters this season. The only pitcher with more is one of Girardi’s starters, A.J. Burnett, who has hit 16.

And Guthrie made that point to my Sun colleague Jeff Zrebiec after he was informed of Girardi’s statement.

“He understands that he has a great pitcher over there in A.J. that his hit more guys than I have,” Guthrie told Zrebiec. “I watch and appreciate the aggressive nature that A.J. takes in throwing to both sides of the plate and I think I’m a similar pitcher. One of the occupational hazards when you do that is you are occasionally going to hit some guys, but you can’t let that affect what you do. Hitting guys intentionally is something totally different, but pitching inside has to be part of what I do to be effective."

He also added this:

“The most important thing for me is to listen and take advice from my own manager, Buck Showalter, and not to worry about the other 29 managers and what they have to say about my pitching.”

Guthrie said during his post-game press conference that his command was off all game, and it started with that first pitch.

“Just trying to go inside. Derek knows I am going to throw the ball in there all day long, that’s the way I approach it,” Guthrie said. “So I guess it was a good indicator when I tried to throw the pitches away later on in the game they went inside and when I tried to throw that one inside it went way inside. So it’s just a matter of not having great command tonight.”

For his part, Jeter called Guthrie “effectively wild” and said he “didn’t read anything into” being hit in the first.

“I haven’t been counting (how many Yankees Guthrie has plunked),” Jeter said. “But, no, I don’t think he hit me on purpose.”

Posted by Dan Connolly at 12:03 AM | | Comments (9)


He hit Jeter on purpose for Arod's Hr the day before, and how slow he circled the bases.

petty man-

I have seen some yankees hit by pitches that might have been strikes, mostly pitchers trying to pitch inside which some pitchers never do. BUT even the yankees with more money than god haven't gotten the rules changed (yet) to say the inside corner isn't a strike on them.. Good job Guthrie the only manager you have to go by is named Buck not joe..

Guthrie is such a class act. And a very smart dude. Sort of like Mussina without the cocky attitude.
Of course he didn't put the first guy of the game on base intentionally. But if he did, great. Girardi whines too much, to be sure.

joe girardi is just being a cry baby. if memory serves me it was don drysdale that said both sides of the plate belong to me. if the player is too stupid to stand on top of the plate and gets hit that is the players falt

So what if he hit Jeter on purpose? Burnett plunked 2 on Friday and A-Rod not only took 10 minutes to circle the bases, but he gloated to his dugout from 3rd to home.

Both deserved a retaliation.

Deal with it Girardi. Quit whining. Your pitcher leads the league in hit batters.

What a punk.

If you like to lean over the plate and not get out of the way of an inside pitch, then you will get hit.

Joe Cryhardi should shut his man-pleaser.

I'm thankful the inside pitch hasn't disappeared from the game . . . yet. Now that youth and college ball uses aluminum, hitting the ball off the skinny part of the bat can be a hit, instead of a broken bat and a nasty wrist sting, so too many young pitchers are coming into pro ball having never learned to use the inside half of the plate.

Girardi is an idiot and Guthrie needs to just ignore him. If anything he should say nothing and plunk Arod next time. Jeter leans out over the plate and further into inside pitches.

The Yankees cry more than any team in the league. Especially Jeter, , Swisher and Posada complain about every called strike and eventually the imps give in and the Yankees get the calls. last week Swisher complained throughout the game and got 2 close pitches for balls that led to the 2-0 home run. Then yesterday Arod complained about the first inside strike call and got the next 2.

It's about time an O's pitcher was willing to challenge them and Girardi knows it, so he's just trying to get Jeremy to back down.

After the way Girardi disrespected this team before becoming the Yankees manager, and the way that team disrespected Torre, he needs to keep out of what happens on this team and focus more on what happens on his! How is it that a team with a payroll that size struggles to get around the diva free Tampa Bay? The Tampa 3rd baseman is Evan Longoria, not Eva Longoria, take note A-Rod to be a good 3rd baseman you don’t need to be seen on the cover of the tabloids.
Jeter doesn’t really deserve to get hit, perhaps that’s why he doesn’t feel like it’s happening on purpose. Texiera however, does need to get plunked. Plunked, run over on the base paths, booed on the field (more often). Who even said that Texiera’s meals need to be properly prepared? That has got to be one of the most disrespectful people, at least towards this team. That’s not to say he can’t come HOME (!) and fill an opening we have. Heck I wouldn’t hate the guy as much if he played in Washington.
I hate the Yankees! Not the team, can’t really fault them for running a successful franchise. I can’t tolerate the egos and the divas over there! Oh no, lowly Baltimore is standing up to us, quick to the papers with a bunch of whinning!!! Again there is a core of players that I can’t fault, they came up with a winning team and staying with winning team. That core of…how many out of the 30? Oh yeah four.

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About the bloggers
A Baltimore native, Dan Connolly has been covering sports for 14 years, and baseball and the Orioles for 10 seasons, including the past six with The Sun. His first year covering baseball on a daily basis was Cal Ripken Jr.'s final season as a player. It's believed that is just a coincidence.

Steve Gould is an assistant sports editor for The Sun, overseeing Orioles coverage. The Columbia native joined The Sun as a sports copy editor in 2006 after graduating from the University of Maryland.

Peter Schmuck has been covering baseball for a lot longer than Steve Gould has been on this earth. He is now a general sports columnist, but has been a beat writer covering three major league teams (the Dodgers, Angels and Orioles) and also spent a decade as the Sun's national baseball writer. If you want more of his insight on the Orioles and other sports issues, check out his personal blog -- The Schmuck Stops Here.

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