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Jim Leyland thinks Cole Hamels’ five-game suspension “is way too light”

May 8, 2012, 11:19 AM EDT

Jim Leyland Reuters

Lost in Cole Hamels saying his decision to intentionally hit Bryce Harper was “old school” is that someone who’s actually old school thinks he should have been suspended for longer than five games.

Jim Leyland, who’s 67 years old with 21 years of big-league managing experience and a World Series title, told Jason Beck of MLB.com that “five games is way too light, in my personal opinion.”

Leyland called Hamels “a very good pitcher” and “a very talented guy” but noted “that ball could have missed, hit [Harper] in the head or something else like that.” And the Tigers manager was also bothered by the “braggadocious way” in which Hamels admitted to the plunking being intentional.

It’s a moot point, as Hamels has already decided to serve the five-game suspension and will essentially just have his next start pushed back by one day, but when “old school” is being thrown around as some sort of absolute state of mind it’s interesting to hear from a baseball lifer like Leyland on the subject.

  1. takingbovadasmoney - May 8, 2012 at 2:27 PM

    The Marlboro Man needs to mind is own business. Leyland needs to worry about his Nazi Leftfielder who Jewish pitchers don’t even fear in the five hole and can’t protect the 185 million $ man. I’d never pitch to Fielder with Herr Young batting behind him. Leyland needs to worry about his second basemen who combined are hitting. 140. Worry about your rightfielder who can’t hit his weight and couldn’t throw out Timmy from South Park going from first to third on a line drive one hopper right to him.

  2. randygnyc - May 8, 2012 at 2:37 PM

    Except that Hamels is not the arbiter of justice in MLB. He had no reason to throw at baseballs new golden goose. That’s why Hamels deserved his hbp and suspension. And for anyone to think this is over, doesn’t know baseball. And nownthat Hamels has this recent suspension, he won’t be able to retaliate.

    Hamels lost the moral high ground with anything baseball related when he quit on his teammates and the fans while begging for the 2009 season to end.

    • tfoz5150 - May 8, 2012 at 7:22 PM

      He’s back now though. Does he do/ say stupid stuff like this from time to time? Yes. But he’s still a money pitcher who I’m sure was just trying to cool down this whole Nats PR thing and let them and his teammates know they’re not going to go quietly. for all I know Charlie could’ve been the one who told him to do it.

  3. dawglb - May 8, 2012 at 6:19 PM

    I am so tired of hearing about Harper “stealing home” on Hamels. It was a little league steal of home (throw over to first), Not a classic Jackie Robinson steal of home.

    • jcarne9014 - May 8, 2012 at 7:15 PM

      Please tell me that you are not serious. So, according to you, stealing home (even on a throw over to first) is no big deal. It is an indication that the pitcher has stopped paying attention and/or the runner on third has big balls.

  4. zurg4242 - May 8, 2012 at 9:39 PM

    What a PHONEY!!!! Leyland knows over his 400 year career he has told numerous pitchers to hit batters, and if he denies that he’s full bunk. actually if he hasn’t given the order he’s the only manager EVER to have not. I can’t stand hypocrites.

  5. phil0569 - May 9, 2012 at 1:29 AM

    A starting pitcher should be penalized in games started and a relief pitcher should be penalized in team games.

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