Bruce Bochy's comments about the Zack Greinke-Carlos Quentin brawl Thursday night ring true, but they also highlight an ugly part of baseball that should be eliminated -- fighting.
Some would argue, like in hockey, that the eventual bench-clearing brawl is a necessary component of the professional game. That argument makes some sense for the National Hockey League -- players rough up each other at every turn.
But for a non-contact sport like Major League Baseball, fighting does more harm than good.
Greinkie was pummelled to the ground during a 3-2 win over the San Diego Padres by Carlos Quentin.
Bochy, manager of the World Series champion San Francisco Giants, had a lukewarm response when asked about the fight.
"Boys will be boys," Bochy said (via the Silcon Valley Mercury News). "It's unfortunate and you hate see anyone get hurt in these brawls."
He's right, to an extent -- "boys will be boys." The hit-by-pitch-throw down won't fade out of the game until pitchers stop intentionally hitting batters. But Greinke wasn't looking to bean Quentin, who obviously over reacted by the 3-2 love tap.
Quentin told CBSSports the following. Greinke ended up suffering a broken collar bone and will be sidelined "for weeks," according to CBSSports report.
"It's a man's game on the field," Quentin said. "Thoughts aren't present when things like this happen."
Quentin said later that getting plunked by pitches by Greinke during the 2008 and 2009 seasons was justification enough to charge the mound when it happened again.
If Greinke hadn't said anything, "There's a chance I don't" rush the mound, Quentin said. "Like I said, there is a history there, which is the reason I reacted like I did. Who knows what happens if he doesn't say anything or if he motions that it wasn't intentional?"
The Dodgers disagree, natually, with Quentin's explanation. Quentin was said to crowd and dive into the plate while up to bat. Dodgers outfielder Matt Kemp had an exchange with Quentin -- who awaits suspension from MLB -- and was outraged about the situation that unfolded Thursday.
He told CBS the following:
"I got emotional because first off, we shouldn't even have been in that situation," Kemp said in the clubhouse before his confrontation with Quentin. "People with good baseball IQs know that when you have a one-run lead in the sixth inning and it's a 3-2 count, Greinke's not going to hit you on purpose.
"I think Carlos Quentin went to Stanford? Something like that. Yeah. I heard there's smart people at Stanford. That wasn't too smart," Kemp said.
The absence of Greinke will surely put pressure on Clayton Kershaw and Josh Beckett, the Dodgers' No. 1 and 4 starters, respectively.
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