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Major League Baseball pretty much has to suspend Ryan Dempster, right?

Aug 19, 2013, 9:32 AM EDT

Not an original thought — I saw a lot of people including Keith Law say it last night — but after Ryan Dempster clearly and repeatedly threw at Alex Rodriguez last night, they have to suspend him, don’t they? If they don’t, doesn’t every pitcher in baseball get carte blanche to throw at A-Rod too?

What’s more, if you don’t suspend Dempster in that situation — a situation in which almost every other pitcher gets a suspension — don’t you give fuel to A-Rod’s “Major League Baseball is Out to Get Me” defense his lawyers have been floating lately?

It seems clear, but I feel like silly thinking like this from Joel Sherman may prove pretty common too:


A “tacit defense?” Not sure how it could be seen that way. It would really just be a matter of enforcing the rules that have always existed. And, as we noted earlier, it’s not at all clear that’s why Dempster was throwing at Rodriguez anyway.

Strip away the drama and it’s a pretty simple situation: one player was acting in a low rent fashion, the other was shaking it all off and leading his team to victory in such a manner as it could very well turn their season around.

All Hail A-Rod.

  1. DiscountMescan - Aug 19, 2013 at 11:52 AM

    I’m not saying Ortiz did/didn’t use PED’s but let’s not pretend he became a power hitter overnight.

    • raysfan1 - Aug 19, 2013 at 3:46 PM

      Didn’t young, skinny Ortiz win that impromptu HR derby?

      • raysfan1 - Aug 19, 2013 at 3:48 PM

        On, wait, I get your point now. Sorry, it’s Monday.

  2. dcarroll73 - Aug 19, 2013 at 2:23 PM

    Someone in this thread mentioned the idea that if MLB doesn’t step up and suspend Dempster then it will be open season on A-rod in each series they play. As a Yankees fan, let me just say that if MLB won’t step up, I hope that the Yanks do. They should make it very unsafe for the best hitter on any team that thinks they can pull this. If MLB does not want an escalating bean ball war, now would be the time to act. I grew up in the glory days of Gibson and Drysdale, and since I also am a fan of the Giants, I saw a lot of intimidation pitches which somehow just made Mays a bit more determined. This could get ugly very quickly.

  3. Chris Ross - Aug 19, 2013 at 4:29 PM

    Nice article. It was definitely a little curious to see Dempster go after A-Rod. No one had done it yet and I’m actually proud of him for doing so. Maybe it’s because I’m Canadian or maybe it’s because I hate A-Rod, maybe a bit of both. But it is still wrong if the MLB wants to let this go and we will see what they will do. It will be interesting to see how this develops, if the MLB does anything and if the Yankees do anything in the future going into the stretch run.

  4. saeconsult1 - Aug 19, 2013 at 4:38 PM

    Listen, I am not an A-Rod fan, but when it is sooooobvious that Dempster was intentionally throwing at A-Rod last night, I don’t see how MLB cannot suspend him. It is one thing to dislike, even hate someone for what he did, but that doesn’t give any pitcher the license to in affect take the law in his own hands.

  5. jmcknight63 - Aug 19, 2013 at 5:19 PM

    Dempster does need to be suspended for what he did.. The dude previously stated that he had an issue with A-Rod and that he would bean him the first chance he got…. He need sto be severly suspended.. I bet if A-Rod would have walked thrown his bat at Dempster Bud Selig would have fined or Suspended A-Rod.. I do like A-Rod and I do like the Yankees, Is it right for what A-Rod did. NOOOO He needs to serve the 50 game suspension, no less no more. AND if MLB does not do something.. The next game I would plunk every batter that came up, and when I ran out of pitchers I would start putting postion players up, With a 40 man roster, I could bean alot..

  6. peartree97 - Aug 19, 2013 at 6:21 PM

    I am fairly surprised that no one in this thread noticed that A-rod was pretty much avoided by his own teammates in the bull pen last night. Except for Girardi coming to his defense — like a good manager should 😉, no one in the game, including the umps seemed particularly out of joint about the intentional beaning. Yes, Dempster should be suspended for beaning A-Rod intentionally — and blatantly — but what seems to be missing from this discussion is the obvious dislike of the other players for Rodriguez. Had he not produced in the game, I think the underlying currents of this would be more obvious. We’ll see what comes in the next few weeks, but it seems to me that the other players, managers, & umpires see him as a bad seed and don’t want him on the field. Just sayin’.

    • jdillydawg - Aug 19, 2013 at 8:15 PM

      Guy on the radio was talking about how chemistry in baseball was overrated. If a shortstop and 2nd baseman hate each other, won’t stop them from turning a double play.

      So, if A-Rod keeps hitting the way he has been and the Yankees by some miracle make the playoffs, there will be plenty of love for him in the dugout. And I’m pretty sure Yankees fans will be quite forgiving too. Memories are short – really, really short. Especially when you’re winning.

      Although, what would be hilarious is if A-Rod got so fed up with all the abuse he actually caused the Yankees to lose. Now that would be funny.

    • mtsommer5 - Aug 19, 2013 at 9:20 PM

      The Yankees bench and bullpen emptied. Several of those players were ready to throw down, especially Brett Gardner, who was restrained. Later Gardner got his own revenge with a 2 RBI triple, that could have been an inside the park HR if he had not slowed down twice on the base paths.

      This was the best way for the Red Sox to help the Yankees rally around Alex Rodriguez.

  7. jdillydawg - Aug 19, 2013 at 8:11 PM

    The real problem is that MLB has no idea what punishment to levy. 211 games maybe? How about 50? 105? 6?

    They are a model of consistency when it comes to punishment.

  8. mtsommer5 - Aug 19, 2013 at 9:42 PM

    The MLB Players Association negotiated that ever has the right to appeal a suspension. That is regardless of whether it is for 1 game or 211 games, or presumably even a lifetime ban. The player also has the right to continue playing while the appeal is in process. So the MLB Players Association instituted the rules that enable Alex Rodriguez to continue playing. No individual has the right to take that matter into his own hands. Dempster should be reprimanded by both MLB and the MLB Players Association. If there is no response, then his premeditated act to throw at another player opens the door for more acts of aggression by any pitcher who thinks his point of view should be the law.

    MLB is also to blame for handling this situation. The 211 game suspension, while others including Ryan Braun received much lesser suspensions is a travesty. Braun tested positive, but got off on a technicality of how the sample was handled. But that handling could not have resulted in a false positive, only a possible false negative. MLB attempted to give Rodriguez the kiss of death without implementing a lifetime ban. That was spineless, and Rodriguez had no choice but to appeal.

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