Valid arguments can be made on each side of the stupidity that happend during Sunday’s Tigers/Angels game, but Jered Weaver gets the Asshole of the Month award for throwing at Detroit catcher, Alex Avila’s head.
Say what you will about the showboating by the Tigers’ Carlos Guillen (and allegedly Magglio Ordonez), but there is simply no excuse for throwing at anyone’s head. There is no rule, written or unwritten, that can justify any action that could end someone’s career or even their life.
It’s difficult to know what started the whole brouhaha but it appears Weaver got pissed at Maggs’ marveling over his 2-run bomb in the 3rd. Perhaps sensing the Cy Young award slipping away to his counterpart on the mound, Justin Verlander, Weaver’s 10¢ brain couldn’t figure out that Ordonez wasn’t sure if the ball was going to be fair or foul immediately as the ball missed the foul pole by mere inches. He was simply following the trajectory of the ball for a moment to confirm it was a home run before putting his head down and trotting around the bases as the “unwritten rulebook” mandates. Later in the game, Weaver jawed at Magglio after a fly out as he passed the mound on his way back to the dugout, presumably about his perceived slight.
Admittedly, Carlos Guillen acted like a clown with his subsequent stare down and waltz around the diamond after his 7th inning solo shot, but Weaver’s overreaction was borderline criminal. After screaming at Guillen and receiving a warning from home plate umpire, Hunter Wendelstedt, Weaver promptly fired his first pitch directly at Avila’s head. Luckily, he was able to barely duck under the missile, otherwise, the unthinkable may have happened and I might be writing about a tragedy while Weaver sits in a jail cell. If he wanted to retaliate, hit him in the backside or—here’s a novel idea—strike the guy out!
Baseball’s “unwritten rulebook” is a very tedious and often childish text authored by thin-skinned players and coaches who can’t handle the slightest assault on their enormous, yet incredibly fragile egos. Justin Verlander was even guilty of referencing it’s stupidity when he stared down the LA’s Erick Aybar after he attempted to break up Verlander’s no-hit bid with a bunt to lead off the 8th. In a 3-0 game Aybar has every right to do whatever he can to get on base, no matter what historical feat the opposing pitcher is about to achieve. To quote former NY Jets’ coach, Herman Edwards: “You PLAY to WIN the GAME! HELLO?” Fortunately, Verlander decided to simply glare at Aybar and not jeopardize the Angels’ next batter’s career and life by hurling a 100 mph projectile at his head to retaliate.
After the game, Angels center fielder, Torii Hunter put it best when he said “I thought that was all stupid. Everybody was stupid.” I couldn’t agree more, but Weaver’s dangerous, idiotic and disproportionate reaction is what sets him apart to make him the Asshole of the Month. Congrats.