Dan Jennings, Arizona Diamondbacks Show How Baseball is Dumb Sometimes


Since I was 8-years old, I have been a die-hard baseball fan. I remember keeping track of the home run chase between Sammy Sosa and Mark McGwire as one of the first moments of my baseball fandom. And after going to my first Marlins’ game in 1999, I’ve been a die-hard Marlins fan. 

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The game of baseball is so beautiful. From the smooth home run strokes to the devastating curveballs, the game is always full of excitement for me. However, there are different points of watching baseball, particularly the Major Leagues, that frustrate the hell out of me.

Last night’s game between the Arizona Diamondbacks and Miami Marlins was a perfect example of the flaw of the sport. Instead of celebrating another dominant start by Marlins’ ace

Jose Fernandez

last night, we are instead focused on the stupidness of the game today.

Jose Fernandez was cruising through the first 5 2/3 innings of the game. Then on an 0-2 count, he lost control of a fastball and it plunked

David Peralta

on the side of the helmet. Peralta immediately went face down on the dirt in front of home plate. Jose Fernandez responded by throwing his arms on his head and ran towards Peralta to make sure he was okay.

For some reason, the Diamondbacks were less worried about their own player and more worried that Jose Fernandez wanted to check on Peralta. The D-Backs were jawing at the umpires to get Fernandez out of the game.  Home-plate umpire Vic Carapazza ejected Diamondbacks bench coach Turner Ward for voicing his displeasure with Fernandez and the umpiring crew.

The Diamondbacks even felt a need for retaliation the next inning, plunking left fielder Christian Yelich on the rear end. D-backs reliever Dominic Leone was quickly ejected from the game, without a warning, as the umpire rightfully determined he hit Yelich on purpose.

Why the D-Backs felt the need to plunk Yelich is beyond me. Fernandez did not hit Peralta intentionally and was clearly shaken between innings in the dugout, as Mat Latos tried to calm him down. Fernandez spent the 7th inning slowing down his fastball from the usual 96-97 to 92-94, in fear of repeating what happened the inning before.

After the game, Jose Fernandez voiced regret and anger at himself for letting that fastball get away.

"“When the ball came out of my hand, I knew it was a really bad pitch,” Fernandez said after he spent several minutes outside the Marlins clubhouse trying to get in touch with Peralta following the game. “I was just hoping for him not to get hit. I was not too happy about that.“I was trying to go in, and it’s sad because I know the kid personally, No. 1, and No. 2, you never want to hit anybody in the head. That’s the last thing you want to do as a pitcher. It’s really scary. I got really scared because that’s not something nice to see.”"

“Unwritten rules” and the protection of those rules are a couple of things I despise about the game. Despite Peralta and the entire ballpark, including both teams, knowing that Fernandez did nothing wrong intentionally, they decided to play the game tit-for-tat game.

In fact, after the game, manager Dan Jennings didn’t even stand up for his own players, instead praising the Diamondbacks for “handling it the right way.”

"“The Diamondbacks handled it the right way,” Marlins manager Dan Jennings said. “It’s part of baseball. They hit Yelly in a spot that sent the message; that’s part of the game.”"

If Jennings seriously believes that retaliating in such a way is “part of baseball,” not only does he not deserve the role of a manager in Major League Baseball, but he doesn’t even deserve the role of General Manager he held before taking on the managerial role.

This backwards thinking is a part of the reason why the Miami Marlins continue to sink in a time where common sense is actually making its way to the baseball field.

It didn’t seem Yelich was in agreement with his manager, that this is apart of the game, going off his reaction to the beaning.

If Jennings has not already not lost respect in the clubhouse for not managing before and for upsetting his pitchers by praising Jose Fernandez, this could be the straw that broke the camels back.

Jennings, of all people, should know that Yelich suffered from back issues earlier this season. A 93-mph fastball to the rear end, regardless of how harmless Jennings or the D-Backs feel it was, can trigger those back issues again.

The Diamondbacks were stupid, in my opinion, for the handling of the aftermath of the Peralta beaning. But Dan Jennings one upped them, but not protecting his team, and promoting one of the stupider parts of baseball.

And for any D-Backs fans reading this, yes, I would react the same way if a player on my favorite team was beamed on the head. I spent the majority of the night Giancarlo Stanton was hit in the face defending Mike Fiers from Marlins fans attacking him on Twitter.

Baseball is a great game. I still believe it to be the best sport, without a contest. But at times, I wonder why I love the game so much, especially when stupid situations, like the one last night, arise.

Hopefully we can eliminate this part of the game, so the game that we all love is even more enjoyable. This would however mean the removal of dinosaur aged minded people like Jennings.

Follow Marlin Maniac on Twitter @MarlinManiac for all your Miami Marlins news, opinion and analysis!

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