Jose Bautista has been the best hitter in baseball this year, leading MLB with 20 home runs and a 1.304 OPS. He’s homering every 7.8 at-bats, so he expects to crush the ball nearly every time up. Meanwhile, White Sox pitcher John Danks has had a tough year dropping to 0-8 after losing Sunday. The lefty was lit up for nine runs over four innings, and he got into it with Bautista in the fourth before exiting the game.
Bautista was batting with his team up 9-2 in the bottom of the 4th. He was already 1-for-2 with an RBI single when he popped out with the bases empty for the second out of the inning. After popping up, Bautista grabbed his bat in disgust and cursed at himself. Danks had some words for Bautista as the slugger was returning to the Toronto dugout (as you can see above).
After the game, Danks explained what he said:
“I just told him to run the bases. He was out there acting like a f—ing clown. I told him to run the bases. He’s a good player. He’s had a great year-and-a-half, no doubt, he’s been one of the best hitters in the league. He was out there acting like he’s Babe Ruth or something. That’s horses—, I think.”
But Danks wasn’t done.
“He isn’t that good to be acting like he needs to hit every ball out of the ballpark,” Danks continued. “That’s just the way I feel. I have pride. I really do. I’ve had a pretty crappy year to this point but I have pride still and I’m not going to let him sit out there and show me up like that.”
Bautista did respond and give his side of what took place. “I got upset at myself and kind of screamed. I heard him yelling out of my sight. He said something to me. I said something back. That’s pretty much it. I don’t want to make a big deal out of it. I was upset at missing a pitch, at myself. If he took it the wrong way, I’m sorry, but I’m not here to make him feel good.”
Bautista may be crushing the ball this year (and last year), but he needs to be humbled a bit. This is baseball — even the best hitters (which Bautista is) still make outs most of the time. Stop acting like you should be hitting a home run every time out. You may think it, but overreacting the way he did is showing the pitcher up. It’s a subtle way of saying this guy sucks and I should be crushing all his pitches.
Sorry to break it to you Jose, but up until this year Danks had been a more accomplished Major Leaguer than you. I’m glad that despite his crappy season, Danks stood up for himself. He should have.
Also see: White Sox announcer suggests Bautista may be corking his bat
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