Ubaldo: “I shouldn’t be” suspended

UPDATE: Indians starter Ubaldo Jimenez has been suspended five games by Major League Baseball and fined an undisclosed amount. Manager Manny Acta said the pitcher will appeal the suspension and is still scheduled to make his first start of the season as planned on Saturday. Check Indians.com for more on this story. The following article was posted Monday morning, before Jimenez learned that he had been suspended. — JB

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GOODYEAR, Ariz. — Ubaldo Jimenez leaned back in his chair inside the Indians’ clubhouse on Monday morning, calmly disagreeing with the notion that a suspension was warranted for his part in Sunday’s altercation with the Rockies.

In his first outing against his former tammates, Jimenez struck Colorado shortstop Troy Tulowitzki on the left elbow with a fastball, flaring tempers and inciting a bench-clearing episode at Salt River Fields. The pitcher insists the pitch was errant, and not the result of the bitter exchange of words in a series of reports throughout Spring Training.

“Hit by pitches happen every day in the game,” Jimenez said on Monday.”It’s not a surprise that somebody gets hit, especially a guy like him. You have to try to go inside on him.”

There were plenty of people who felt this particular hit batsmen was indeed an intentional act on Jimenez’s part. Rockies manager Jim Tracy reacted furiously, demanding that the right-hander be suspended for his actions. Colorado provided Major League Baseball with video of the incident and league officials are currently in the process investigating the matter.

Jimenez did not feel he deserved a suspension.

“I shouldn’t be,” Jimenez said. “I can’t control what people say. People act like this is the first time that somebody got hit. It happens in the game. That’s part of the game. It’s always been part of the game.”

Following Sunday’s events, Indians manager Manny Acta also did not believe a suspension was necessary, especialy because no players were ejected from the game.

“Why?” said Acta, when asked if he was worried Jimenez might be suspended. “Do you know if it was intentional? Nobody knows. I don’t know anything behind it. I don’t know of any history.”

The Indians acquired Jimenez from the Rockies at the July 31 Trade Deadline last season, when the pitcher stumbled through a 10-13 showing with a 4.68 ERA. This spring, Jimenez has criticized the Colorado organization in various reports, hinting at unfair treatment as a Minor Leaguer and a feeling of disrespect over the contract he was given.

In response to Jimenez’s comments, Tulowitzki and Rockies outfielder Carlos Gonzalez were among those who had choice words for the pitcher in a variety of published reports this spring. That provided the backdrop for Sunday, when Tulowitzki was in the lineup and Gonzalez sat out due to stomach issues.

Tulowitzki was Colorado’s third hitter in the first inning and Jimenez sent his first pitch to the shortstop high and inside, where it struck his left arm. Tulowitzki began yelling at Jimenez, who dropped his glove, ran off the mound and seemingly dared the shortstop to charge. The benches emptied, but no punches were thrown and the situation was calmed after several minutes.

Tulowitzki left the game to have his elbow examined at a local hospital and X-rays came back negative for any structural damage.

Jimenez said he had no plans of reaching out to Tulowitzki to apologize, even though the pitcher insisted he did not hit the shortstop on purpose.

“No, why?” Jimenez said. “He was calling me [names]. I said already that I didn’t mean to hit him. It was a pitch that got away. I had five walks in the game. I was everywhere.”

During his postgame tirade over the incident, Tracy said he “lost respect for him.”

Jimenez admitted he was taken aback by Tracy’s strong words.

“I can’t control what people say,” Jimenez said. “Whatever they think, just leave it like that. … I mean, I probably was a little surprised to hear that, but that’s OK.”

The incident at Salt River Fields served as a sour ending to a disappointing spring showing for Jimenez, who went 1-4 with a 7.43 ERA in seven Cactus League outings. In his final start, the right-hander gave up six runs on four hits, including two home runs, and ended with five walks and two strikeouts in 4 1/3 innings.

Needless to say, Jimenez is thrilled to put this spring in the rear-view mirror.

“I’m glad this is over,” Jimenez said. “Spring Training is over. Now we’re going to the fun part — the season. That’s where everything counts. I’m really excited for the season.”

–JB

12 Comments

Pingback: Ubaldo Jimenez says he doesn’t deserve suspension, isn’t apologizing, didn’t hit Troy Tulowitzki on purpose | HardballTalk

Anybody know who is traveling to Zebulon tomorrow??????????

JM Bell wrote an interesting post today onHere’s a quick eercxptOpening Day Starter (2003-2008). 2008 Jimmy Rollins 2007 Jimmy Rollins 2006 Jimmy Rollins 2005 Jimmy Rollins 2004 Jimmy Rollins 2003 Jimmy Rollins. 2007 Recap. It’s been fun doing the last 3 position analysis,

It’s funny how people flat out igrone Tulo’s 2008 season and see what he did in 2009 as what he’s expected to do. If anything 2009 was a fluke and 2007 was more of what he’s about. I’d never put Tulo over Reyes. Reyes can hit 10-15 home runs and steal 60+ bases year in and year out. He is more consistent when healthy than Tulo is as well.It’s like trying to see people justify ARod hitting 40 home runs again even though his home runs and slg have been in decline since 2007.

I find it funny that Jimenez gets a 5 game suspension for hitting someone and NOT injuring him…yet when Jason Donald got hit in the wrist in last year’s spring training and went on the DL for over a month the opposing pitcher gets NOTHING. Or how about when Choo got hit in the hand last year and missed 6+ weeks, why didn’t that pitcher get suspended? If the player doesn’t go on the DL then there shouldn’t be a suspension. An ejection, sure, but not a suspension.

Oh Patricia I will never forget the first time you and James came to Gracie’s after you had lost Stefanie, and John and James took off to chat lianevg me with you .I felt so bad as I did not know what to say to you .I had lost my parents a few years previously, but losing them, was nothing like what you are going through with the loss of your beautiful daughter .and I apologize for not having a clue, what to say to you!!!! For once in my life I was speechless LOL. Thanks for this wonderful book that you have written!!! Looking forward to reading it!!!Love DebLove Deb

Sorry Dave, but Reyes averaged 65 SBs 2005-2008 so I’m going to agree with the Professor on this one. I rlealy rlealy want to believe in Bartlett but his 2009 numbers just don’t jive with anything in his career OPS .135 over career, ISO up .063, BABIP up .038. Tier 4 sounds about right.I liked the way Peralta’s numbers had been heading recently then 2009 hit. You’re right about that GB% it looks way out’a whack.Not sold on Drew though. He Ks too much, he doesn’t walk, he doesn’t steal and his power isn’t consistent.A. Cabrera’s speed is hard to pin down. Previously he had .029 SB/H then this year that jumped to .106! His minor career is full of single-digit SB totals except for 23 SBs in a partial AA season in 2007.

Wowza, problem solved like it never happened.

Not sure exactly why, but I relaly like Escobar. To me his only downside is that Bobby Cox seems to dislike his attitude. And that could cause a big playing time issue. I think this kid has nothing but UPSIDE ahead of him. His walk to strike out ration is exceptional and he has power. I think he may need to be traded out of Atlanta before he relaly takes off though. But if I needed a shortstop, I’d figure out when he might be taken and wait to draft him in that round. I’d rank him behind Jeter and easily ahead of everyone else on your list.

All of my questions settled-thanks!

Jenny looks like the kind of person you’d like to spend all of your wdeeknes with. Even before you know she takes amazing photos. Beautiful, fun, real captures as always!

Pingback: Tulo or Ubaldo? Jimenez Out to Prove the Rockies Made the Right Decision | The Baseball Codes

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