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Mark Teixeira says Vicente Padilla “doesn’t have too many friends in the game”

Jul 7, 2012, 10:34 AM EDT

Vicente Padilla Getty Getty Images

Mark Teixeira had the key hit in a wild 10-8 win over the Red Sox last night, delivering a go-ahead two-run triple off Vicente Padilla in a four-run seventh inning.

After the game, Teixeira told reporters that the triple was especially satisfying because he managed to get the best of a long-time nemesis.

“Game-winning hits always feel good,” he said, “but that one definitely felt good.”

“He doesn’t have too many friends in the game,” said Teixeira, who has called out Padilla before for throwing at batters’ heads. “Guy throws at people. Fact of the matter, I’m not saying anything that’s news.”

“In the NFL, he’d probably be suspended by (commissioner) Roger Goodell eight games or a whole season,” Teixeira said. “There’s only one guy in baseball. No one else does this. That’s the thing that is unbelievable to me.”

Padilla’s reputation as a headhunter is well-documented, as he has drawn criticism in the past for putting his teammates at risk for retaliation.

This particular feud stems back to June 9, 2005 when Teixeira was with the Rangers and Padilla was pitching for the Phillies. Teixeira homered in his first two at-bats against Padilla before getting plunked. He was hitless over his last eight at-bats against Padilla before last night’s triple, with three walks and two other hit-by-pitches sprinkled in.

  1. mybrunoblog - Jul 7, 2012 at 10:59 AM

    Teixeira makes valid points here and is 100% correct. Padilla is a headhunter.
    There is a big difference between a guy who pitches inside, brushes guys back and may even occasionally plunk a guy with a fastball to the thigh and a headhunter. Headhunters purposely throw at guys heads and can really harm a batter. No place for guys like that in MLB.

    • aleskel - Jul 7, 2012 at 11:09 AM

      Well said. You don’t have to actually hit batters to intimidate them – for all of his reputation as a monster, Bob Gibson only hit 102 batters in his career. For comparison, Vincente Padilla has hit 107 (in over 2000 fewer innings).

  2. Cyn - Jul 7, 2012 at 11:59 AM

    Over the last two seasons Padilla has hit 2 batters.

    Not that his reputation doesn’t precede him, of course it does. Rightly so. But Teixeira whining about it right now is both odd and a little stupid. He still has to play three games in Fenway and, most likely, he’ll see Padilla again at some point.

    • beefytrout - Jul 7, 2012 at 12:01 PM

      “But Teixeira whining about it right now is both odd and a little stupid.”

      Just like Mark himself.

    • D.J. Short - Jul 7, 2012 at 5:54 PM

      That’s a good point, one I wish I mentioned. Padilla either got the message from his teammates or reformed himself. Or some combination of both, really. He’s up there in age, so he can’t afford to keep behaving that way, anyway. The game could pass him by.

  3. pisano - Jul 7, 2012 at 12:09 PM

    He ought to thank God Padilla was pitching, because he’s been a bust offensively for the Yankees. I can’t count the times he’s failed in that same situation, so he should be thankful Padilla was out there.

  4. cur68 - Jul 7, 2012 at 12:16 PM

    Padilla (valedictorian for the all-ugly class) has been a model pitcher-citizen this season. Perhaps he’s put his head-hunting ways behind him? Either that or its the calming influences of Bobby Val . . .nah.
    Either way, Tex has the right idea: take it out on him at the plate. All this notable-quotable is just window dressing for the spectacle.

  5. steveohho - Jul 7, 2012 at 12:33 PM

    Cant wait to see these guys go at it again. Hope Padilla drills em right in the side. Can’t accuse em of head hunting then?

  6. hittfamily - Jul 7, 2012 at 1:23 PM

    2 for 2 with 2 homeruns. Then he gets nailed. Then he goes 0 for 8. Sounds like a pretty good strategy to me. I think it is far more offensive for a retalliation HBP like the Sox on Luke Scott, or for no reason at all like Cole Hamels,as opposed to this. If someone is diving at pitches, put one in his back. See if he dives and guesses at pitches again anytime soon.

    Guys wear so much armor at the plate nowadays, it is unfair to compare Gibson, or anyone of yesteryear to todays pitchers. Batters didn’t wear helmets in Gibson’s day, and they sure as hell didn’t wear wrist guards, elbow gueards, forearm guards, and shin guards. An inside pitch is just a ball, whereas it used to serve a purpose. Padilla isn’t trying to make friends, and clearly Texeira was just a little to comfortable at the plate. There is only 1 solution to that, and Padilla utilized it.

    • sparky1002 - Jul 10, 2012 at 2:27 PM

      Any pitcher assumed to be intentionally hitting a batter should be removed for the season. There is no excuse for that kind of action just because a pitcher gets his butt handed to him on occasion by a good batter. In the manner of compromise with my position, Iam willing to keep the pitcher in play after an “intentional hitting” call, but only if the batter is allowed to go to the mound and take one swing at the assaulting pitcher with his bat….. on the body part of his choice!

  7. hammyofdoom - Jul 7, 2012 at 1:50 PM

    It really pains me as a red sox fan to have this guy on the team. Yes, yay when he does well for us, but I still remember him with the rangers hitting Red Sox players basically whenever he damn well wanted because he’s a damn putz. Really, is this new news? I thought everyone knew this guy was a dick

  8. Detroit Michael - Jul 7, 2012 at 2:06 PM

    The Rangers also released Padilla once because he was so disliked in the clubhouse (combined with mediocre performance obviously).

    Teixeira and Padilla were teammates in Texas during 2006-07, but Teixeira had left before Padilla was released by Texas in 2009.

  9. bkl121 - Jul 7, 2012 at 2:33 PM

    if i remember correctly, padilla also has a history with nick swisher from when he was with the A’s. and i believe he also once hit teixeira when he was a yankee, after which aj burnett promptly threw at someone’s head and was ejected/suspended.

    as far as he being a “model citizen”, relief pitchers dont get nearly as many opportunities to hit people due to runners on base and shorter appearances.

  10. danaking - Jul 7, 2012 at 4:11 PM

    As I recall, Padilla was the pitcher who didn’t want to go out for another inning and caused the All-Star game to be stopped as a tie, thus creating the abortion of “this time it counts.:”

    So he’s not just a headhunter. He’s a pussy. I guess this is why he ust prefer the American League, where only his teammates are placed at risk for his actions.

  11. dirtyharry1971 - Jul 8, 2012 at 1:28 AM

    What the Yanks need to do is wake up and start drilling redsuk players in the head starting with ortiz. I cant stand how they will not answer back when this sort of thing happens

  12. walterwhite1976 - Jul 8, 2012 at 1:44 AM

    What the Red Sox should do ASAP is drill that girl Texy right in his feminine side. Again. Then maybe he’ll stop singing like a Canary.

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