When Cole Hamels hit Bryce Harper with a 93-mph fastball on Sunday night, the rookie jogged down to first and later stole home. To Harper’s credit, that was a great way to respond to a maneuver that Hamels later admitted was completely intentional. It may not have bothered Harper all that much, but it certainly got under the skin of Nationals GM Mike Rizzo. Here is what Rizzo told Adam Kilgore of the Washington Post on Monday morning:
“Players take care of themselves. I’ve never seen a more classless, gutless chicken s*** act in my 30 years in baseball. Cole Hamels says he’s old school? He’s the polar opposite of old school. He’s fake tough. He thinks he’s going to intimidate us after hitting our 19-year-old rookie who’s eight games into the big leagues? He doesn’t know who he’s dealing with.
“He thinks he’s sending a message to us of being a tough guy. He’s sending the polar opposite message. He says he’s being honest; well, I’m being honest. It was a gutless chicken s*** (expletive) act. That was a fake-tough act. No one has ever accused Cole Hamels of being old school.
“This goes beyond rivalry and all that stuff. This points to, you take the youngest guy in baseball. He’s never done a thing. And then Hamels patted himself on the back. Harper’s old school. Hitting him on the back, that ain’t old school. That’s (expletive) chicken s***.”
Rizzo also said that he hopes the league does something about it, especially given the bounty scandal that is currently going on in the NFL. While hitting a player in the small of their back isn’t exactly targeting an opponent’s ACL, I see his point. Intentionally doing something that you know could harm someone has to lead to some sort of punishment. I smell a rivalry brewing.
H/T Hardball TalkGoogle+