Don't Showboat

Pimping in Twin Cities Sparks Iffy Tiff

Donaldson riled

They showed us what not to do in Minnesota on Wednesday. Then they showed us again … and again.

Oakland’s Josh Donaldson led off the anti-exhibition in the 10th inning by admiring his deep fly ball, which landed just outside the left-field foul pole.

He compounded matters by striking out on the next pitch, a 2-2 slider from Minnesota left-hander Glen Perkins, for the third out of the inning. At the end of his exaggerated follow-through, Donaldson flipped his bat end over end toward the visitors’ dugout, and prepared to take the field. (Watch it here.)

Perhaps Perkins would have tolerated the flip without the foul-ball pimping. Perhaps he would have let the pimping slide without the flip. As it was, he took the time to inform Donaldson exactly how he felt about both ends of the equation, yelling toward the plate as he descended the mound. Donaldson came right back with words of his own, and the benches quickly cleared. No punches were thrown.

“The dude struck me out, pretty good pitch, I flipped my bat and I hear him barking at me,” said Donaldson in an report. “I look up and he says something, points his finger. … I don’t feel like I disrespected him at all. I’m out there trying to win a game for our team and he’s trying to win a game for his team. I don’t know what it was all about. I’ve never even spoken to the guy.”

By referencing his own bat flip, it’s pretty clear that Donaldson knows exactly what it was all about. In case there was any question, Perkins put it quickly to rest.

Asked by reporters after the game if Donaldson had admired his foul ball, the pitcher was succinct. “He did—I think everyone saw that,” he said. “He hit it a long way. But I’m strict, too. I’m not big on that.”

It’s unlikely that this will merit further visitation from either of the aggrieved parties, but in case it does, the teams wrap up the series this afternoon.

6 thoughts on “Pimping in Twin Cities Sparks Iffy Tiff

  1. The video doesn’t show the long foul ball admiration but the bat flip is a total non-offense in my opinion. It looks more like a “screw me for striking out” type of flip.

  2. Please explain to me why the bat flip is offensive. I understand it’s offensive if done after a home run, a la Barry Bonds, but when you strike out, isn’t it a way of showing frustration, or of acknowledging that the other guy got the best of you? While watching the video, by the way, I then saw a clip of Donaldson’s first-inning RBI double, in which he also appeared to stand and admire the shot before taking off. (It looked like a possible HR at first, but that’s a lesson as to why you always run.) I wonder if the Twins were already irritated.

  3. That’s why this is interesting. In a vacuum, bat flip = bad, and Perkins is justified in calling him out. Unless the bat flip ISN’T offensive (about which I agree with you: On its own it was pretty innocuous), and Perkins is just being high strung.

    But sprinkle in a touch of bravado via an ill-timed foul ball pimp … which itself may have followed a similar earlier display … combined with the fact that Donlandson has one full year under his belt while Perkins is an eight-year vet … and even if one doesn’t agree with it, the source of the pitcher’s volatility becomes clearer.

  4. I am not sure I agree on the foul ball pimp. It was foul and donaldson likely knew it off the bat. he didn’t do anything 70% of guys would do when they think the ball is foul

Leave a Reply to Jason Turbow Cancel reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s