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Shocker: “90 percent” of the batters Pedro Martinez hit were hit on purpose

Feb 18, 2013, 5:05 PM EDT

You don’t have the kind of control that Pedro Martinez had and have 141 pitches go so far away from where you intended them to go that they hit the batter accidentially. Maybe 14 or 15 did, though:

I am Jack’s complete lack of surprise.

I am also still of the opinion that intentionally hitting batters is simply dangerous and simply wrong. I am a complex human being, however, who will temper that viewpoint in this instance because (a) Martinez is retired; (b) Martinez never killed anyone; and (c) he’s Pedro frickin’ Martinez, and such greatness is allowed a little latitude now and again.

  1. El Bravo - Feb 18, 2013 at 5:11 PM

    Nah, not Pedro….

  2. vallewho - Feb 18, 2013 at 5:12 PM

    It’s part of the game, but I think it would be nice to see pitchers get their @$$ beaten…and I mean beaten. I simply do not understand standing in the middle of the field and firing a high velocity projectile at someone and having the only consequence being a day off and a meaningless fine.

    • vallewho - Feb 18, 2013 at 5:29 PM

      I always liked seen Pedro pitch. I just looked up the Karim Garcia I and I do hope that if ever Karim runs into Pedro, he beats the living hell out of him.

      • js20011041 - Feb 18, 2013 at 5:49 PM

        Karim Garcia is a worthless scumbag. Fuck him. He was caught stomping a groundskeeper in Boston. What’s more cowardly? An athlete who is prepared for the possibility of having to avoid a pitch coming at him, being thrown at by a pitcher? Or a large bodied professional athlete stomping a groundskeeper with his spikes?

      • vallewho - Feb 18, 2013 at 6:49 PM

        I would be happy with a scumbag beating the hell out of a dirtbag.

      • tuberippin - Feb 19, 2013 at 8:12 PM

        Karim Garcia is too portly; Pedro would use Garcia’s momentum against him in the same way he did with Don Zimmer.

    • danrizzle - Feb 18, 2013 at 5:30 PM

      I agree completely that throwing big rocks at people from a safe distance away while the victim is acutely focused at doing something incredibly difficult (hitting a baseball) with a lot of people nearby to protect you is nothing short of completely cowardly.

      • tuberippin - Feb 19, 2013 at 8:13 PM

        and yet, it’s a part of the game that has been around since the baseballs were mushy and malleable and games were called on account of darkness.

    • opshuns - Feb 18, 2013 at 7:26 PM

      Buzzing a batter is cool, but hitting a batter is BS which of it seems Pefro is…

  3. crisisjunky - Feb 18, 2013 at 5:14 PM

    Frickin’ Saint Pete.

  4. mgscott - Feb 18, 2013 at 5:37 PM

    Pedro is a bada$$

  5. raysfan1 - Feb 18, 2013 at 5:53 PM

    Of course there is also a big difference between aiming high with a fast ball and low with a change up.

  6. riverace19 - Feb 18, 2013 at 5:54 PM

    This is not surprising from one of the baddest ass pitchers ever, one who took the mound with attitude that said “you will not beat me”
    Oh yeah and he also had pretty darn good control

  7. historiophiliac - Feb 18, 2013 at 5:55 PM

    “It’s a legitimate baseball strategy.” — Yogi Berra

    • sabatimus - Feb 18, 2013 at 7:28 PM

      And anyone who thinks that other Hall of Famer pitchers didn’t throw at people on purpose is lying to themselves.

      • petey1999 - Feb 19, 2013 at 12:56 AM

        Ask Bob Gibson.

  8. somekat - Feb 18, 2013 at 5:57 PM

    For all saying “it’s part of the game”, it isn’. It WAS 20 years ago. It SHOULD be now. But it isn’t. Why? Simple, because pitchers get tossed for nothing now.

    It’s like when a team hits a batter, and the ump gives both teams warnings….when one of those teams haven’t done anything yet. Like everything else in this country, baseball has gone soft

    • 18thstreet - Feb 19, 2013 at 7:53 AM

      Scrolling down this list, I don’t see any reason to believe that pitchers are hitting batters less than they used to:
      http://www.baseball-reference.com/leaders/HBP_p_leagues.shtml

      Like everyone else in this country, SomeKat is an idiot.

      • 18thstreet - Feb 19, 2013 at 7:54 AM

        Things I just learned: without spaces doesn’t show up here.

      • 18thstreet - Feb 19, 2013 at 7:54 AM

        That was a “sarcasm” tag. Sigh.

  9. 13arod - Feb 18, 2013 at 6:02 PM

    He used steriods that is why he was good

    • approvenothing - Feb 18, 2013 at 8:57 PM

      Trolololol?

  10. norvturnersneck - Feb 18, 2013 at 6:07 PM

    Love the Fight Club reference

  11. hk62 - Feb 18, 2013 at 6:20 PM

    This is why the DH is such a bad idea – little tougher when the P has the dig in himself (not that it would have stopped Pedro)

    • mashoaf - Feb 19, 2013 at 1:42 AM

      Pedro was on the Expos… So ya, I suppose it didn’t stop him…

  12. sgtr0c - Feb 18, 2013 at 6:39 PM

    A picther hitting batters is like a quarterback scrambling to make plays. Neither should be a playmaker, they should be thinking about the pitch/play 5th from now. Be the sarge!

    I did like Pedro when he was on my team, a bit.

    • js20011041 - Feb 19, 2013 at 8:14 AM

      LSD is a hell of a drug.

  13. DelawarePhilliesFan - Feb 18, 2013 at 7:09 PM

    Reminds me of the curious case of Reggie Sanders. Who charged the mound after being plunked by Pedro. Problem is…..that HBP on Sanders ended a Perfect Game. In the 8th inning.

    Have to believe that was one of the 14 legit ones

    http://articles.latimes.com/1994-04-14/sports/sp-45939_1_perfect-game

  14. bla bla bla - Feb 18, 2013 at 7:13 PM

    I remember seeing a Pedro interview where he was asked about “The curse of the Bambino.”

    Pedro replied “I wish Babe Ruth was playing today. I’d drill him in his big fat ass.”

    I became a fan, right then and there.

  15. tfbuckfutter - Feb 18, 2013 at 7:32 PM

    Interestingly 100% of the people he has beaten up were already 90% dead at the time.

    • historiophiliac - Feb 18, 2013 at 9:18 PM

      So, mostly dead.

      • raysfan1 - Feb 18, 2013 at 10:47 PM

        Remember…mostly dead is slightly alive.
        http://screen.yahoo.com/the-princess-bride-clip-mostly-dead-30718797.html

  16. dirtyharry1971 - Feb 18, 2013 at 7:41 PM

    whenever i think pedro i will always think about the “03 ALCS and even more so the 2009 WS where he got totally OWNED and made sure the phils got buried. That image will forever burn in my mind, it was so beautiful watching him embaress himself on the big stage

    • hammyofdoom - Feb 18, 2013 at 9:00 PM

      Yes, because when I think of hall of fame athletes I tend to think of their last year when they were at the tail end of their career and, shockingly, they got beat. Or that one game where their coach left them in too long while they were in the middle of an otherwise dominating season. Yep, that’s what I like to do

  17. chacochicken - Feb 18, 2013 at 7:51 PM

    Oh, come on. You get hit and take the base. Then you charge that bastard from his blind side. I did this in high school. The catcher grabbed the back of my belt as soon as the pitch hit me. I was blurry with anger but realized I couldn’t get to him and he was staring at me so I shook it off and took my base. Got a little lead off and broke into a sprint to the mound. I ran through him like a wet cardboard box. My arm was numb for like 4 hours after the hit and he had the wind knocked out of him for like 5 minutes. Maybe the crowning achievement of my junior season.

    • unclemosesgreen - Feb 19, 2013 at 6:10 AM

      That is a horrible story, and it was a stupid thing to do. The problem is the ending – someone who had grown as a person would admit that it was the senseless act of a loser.

      I’m not saying that I haven’t done stupid things. I responded to this post, for instance. It’s just that I look back on them and think “boy was that (stupid, lame dangerous, whatever)” — not “Ha ha I did something amazing.”

      • chacochicken - Feb 19, 2013 at 9:06 AM

        I thought I was particularly clever at that moment. And by crowning achievement, I mean, I wasn’t particularly good. Since this is a game, having another human being throw fastballs at you deliberately (as in the catcher grabs you a split second after you’ve been struck) should present a learning experience. I could have taken the significant bruise and been afraid of this guy throwing at me for the whole game and the next time we meet but I taught him that battery plays both ways and neither are a part of the game. I’m not a particularly violent person and wouldn’t respond to most things with violence but to mar a game by having the possibility of serious injury occur from “sending a message”. I took it that was completely unacceptable as I posed major hitting threat but I stole a base after my first at bat. Charging that guy may have been many things but it definitely wasn’t stupid.

      • unclemosesgreen - Feb 19, 2013 at 2:32 PM

        I think you’re a funny guy, just not a fan of that stuff. I thought the way Bryce Harper reacted last year was THE way to react. Steal 2 bases and tag up on a shallow fly to score a completely manufactured run. Or it was something amazing like that.

        Plus you may not understand this, but the only way to let the pitcher know for sure that you’re tougher is to get up slowly, dust yourself off, and take your base. Don’t even look at him. Anything else – and he knows that he owns the inside of the plate on you forever. He knows he got to you.

        When you keep your control and go to first, you’re letting him know that he ain’t sh!t, your grandma throws harder than that, and that if he was trying to accomplish something he failed.

  18. stercuilus65 - Feb 18, 2013 at 8:11 PM

    I wonder how many were in the AL when he didn’t have to bat?

    • hammyofdoom - Feb 18, 2013 at 9:04 PM

      Actually the numbers arent that different. In like 7-8 seasons in the NL he had around 64 and in 7 seasons in the AL he had 77. Yeah there were more in the AL but not that much

  19. mj1818 - Feb 18, 2013 at 9:05 PM

    It is a part of the game, agreed. Sometimes when guys cry an run their mouth or show boat like A-rod, they deserve a beaner.

    • daisycutter1 - Feb 18, 2013 at 10:16 PM

      That would seem to make sense, but David Ortiz hardly ever gets HBP.

      • petey1999 - Feb 19, 2013 at 12:59 AM

        Fast feet.

    • bigharold - Feb 19, 2013 at 2:14 AM

      “… they deserve a beaner.”

      If there was any validity to that then Manny and Ortiz should be dead.

      I get it, .. throwing inside is part of the game but deliberately hitting people, .. in the head is BS.

  20. anarchopurplism - Feb 19, 2013 at 12:09 AM

    Would it be acceptable to chuck your bat @ the pitcher in response to HBP?

    @chacochicken…….great story

  21. josemartez - Feb 19, 2013 at 10:11 AM

    I remember when he was with Montreal he was in the late innings of an up-to-that-point perfect game against the Reds and he hit Billy Hatcher (who then charged the mound which I thought was one of the dumbest things I’ve ever seen in a baseball game). I’m assuming he was one of the 14 or 15 he didn’t mean to hit.

  22. louhudson23 - Feb 19, 2013 at 12:44 PM

    If you read Gibson,Drysdale and others ,they threw inside when they felt hitters were cheating in on the plate and laying on the fastball. Or listen to Aaron, Mays or Robinson(Jackie and Frank) speak about receiving one up and in. It was a battle of wills and territory.In today’s game ,many hitters literally have body parts over the plate and they repeatedly lunge across the plate after pitches. Much of this was the direct result of the rectangular strike zone made part of the game in the 80’s and 90’s,where the high strike disappeared and pitches four inches outside became strikes. So many(former) college players learning to hit with an aluminum 8″ sweet spot made hitters more confident to stand in as well.Things have gradually swung back to reality, as the high strike has returned and the width of the plate is the strike zone again,for the most part. Busting a pitch inside to a hitter crowding the plate is the birthright of any pitcher.Chin music is reserved for those who fail to get the message. Pedro understood it and made sure hitters did too. Many of the greatest players of all time managed to cope with conceding the outside part of the plate and daring a pitcher to come inside on him. Most refused to do so,for good reason.

  23. yankeehawk - Feb 20, 2013 at 8:16 PM

    sure Pedro….say that now….u didn’t have the balls to say that when u were playing……nothing but a p***y..

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