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Shocker: the Cardinals think the Dodgers celebrate too much

Oct 15, 2013, 8:40 AM EDT

St Louis Cardinals v Los Angeles Dodgers - Game Three Getty Images

Sometimes baseball players are criticized for not appreciating that they get paid a lot of money to play a kids’ game. Sometimes they are criticized for realizing that they’re playing a kids’ game and acting accordingly. Just can’t win!

That was the case with the Dodgers last night anyway. First, Adrian Gonzalez doubled and was pumped up about it, gesturing enthusiastically to his teammates in the Dodgers dugout. Then, later, Yasiel Puig tripled and — because his depth perception was off and because he’s faster than hell — he (a) celebrated what he thought was a homer out of the box; and (b) celebrated what actually turned out to be a triple when he got to third:

Not surprisingly the Cardinals who, with the Braves out of the playoffs, are the ranking active Fun Police, took issue. First Adam Wainwright on Gonzalez’s enthusiasm:

“I saw Adrian doing some Mickey Mouse stuff on third base, but I didn’t see what Yasiel did. Those guys are fired up. This is playoff baseball, they want it over there.”

Translation: it’s OK to be pumped, but you should be pumped in a particular way or else it’s “Mickey Mouse.”  Here’s Carlos Beltran on Puig:

“I think he doesn’t know,” Beltran said. “He still thinks he’s playing somewhere else, I don’t know. He has a lot of passion, no doubt about that. Great ability, great talent, and I think with time, he will learn that you have to sometimes act a little bit more calm … It’s not great, I don’t like it, but what can I say? I don’t play for them. I just play over here and need to do my job.”

My view: Gonzalez wasn’t taunting anyone. He directed nothing at the Cardinals. He was fired up and was trying to fire up his teammates. Not sure how anyone can call that “Mickey Mouse.” Heck, until recently I thought the knock on Gonzalez was that he lacked fire and was dour. Again, can’t win.

Puig? Puig is, well, Puig. And while I can imagine you don’t like it if he’s doing that against your team, I can’t see how anyone can watch that guy and not smile. He’s enjoying himself. Yes, the game will humble him — until yesterday it had been pretty well in recent days — but there’s nothing wrong with being pumped up and enthused. And it is enthusiasm. It’s spontaneous. It’s not like he’s choreographing moves out there.

Don’t want those guys doing that stuff? Keep ’em off base. That shuts everyone up.

152 Comments (Feed for Comments)
  1. sdemp - Oct 15, 2013 at 11:11 AM

    I thought the first rule in baseball was. . . There’s no crying in baseball.

    The Cardinals are the biggest crybabies out of a loundry list of them in baseball.

    • edpeters101 - Oct 15, 2013 at 12:47 PM

      Baseball players need to do there job: Run the bases, and keep their mouths shut! They are not politicians who continually run their mouths, and do nothing else!

      • jdillydawg - Oct 15, 2013 at 1:04 PM

        What is your point, exactly? That politicians should be playing baseball? I love the Cards, but they bore me. I love the Dodgers because they are exciting. I laughed my ass off when Puig discovered it wasn’t going yard. And he may have been more excited getting the triple. That was awesome baseball.

        Players – actually, all people – have personalities. Why are we so afraid to let anyone show them?

        I actually think Mickey Mouse was a compliment. One of the greatest characters ever who knew how to have fun. Maybe all players need to hang out at Disneyland a little more…

    • Sign Ahead - Oct 15, 2013 at 3:50 PM

      I don’t think it’s just the Cardinals. Across the board, this has been a remarkably whiny post season.

      • hustleandflomax - Oct 15, 2013 at 6:26 PM

        Don’t you know? It’s 2013. Otherwise known as “we’re-all-tired-of-the Cardinals-making-the-postseason-every-year-so-let’s-gang-up-and-piss-all-over-them-and-their-fans time. Woo hoo, join in on the fun!

  2. kingjoe1 - Oct 15, 2013 at 11:11 AM

    The Cards and all those who hate batters celebrating should go read a nice book and make “participation” medals.
    Pitchers give the “Tiger Woods ” fist pump when they strike a out a batter in a big situation why shouldnt someone else be allowed to add some personality to a baseball game?

    • kevinbnyc - Oct 15, 2013 at 1:21 PM

      Better yet…Beltran should shut up and not play that ball so incredibly badly that Puig, who walked out of the box, couldn’t make it into a stand-up triple.

      Want to talk about playing the game the right way? How about knowing the the ball is going to ricochet off the wall, so you shouldn’t be 6 inches from the wall when it hits.

  3. realitypolice - Oct 15, 2013 at 11:16 AM

    Hopefully Puig is the guy that finally puts the torch to the unwritten book of unwritten rules, the dumbest thing in the history of sports. What kind of dour old fool cares how another man celebrates? Gee, I wonder why the PRE-GAME SHOW for an NFL game between two teams with losing records gets DOUBLE the ratings of an ALCS game? I hope whoever the next commissioner is wizens up and starts fining and suspending anyone who “enforces” unwritten “rules”. Maybe then baseball can become something more than a regional sport that the country only pays attention for 3 weeks in October or when there is a scandal.

  4. makeham98 - Oct 15, 2013 at 11:16 AM

    Cardinal fans = Stepford wives. The correct way to watch a Cardinals game: Wear big earphones tuned in to am radio to block out any interaction with humans. Only get up to do the wave. Drink overpriced lousy beer.

    • stlouis1baseball - Oct 15, 2013 at 1:09 PM

    • hustleandflomax - Oct 15, 2013 at 1:35 PM

      And Dodger fans are either gang-bangers or celebrities. Generalization is idiotic.

      • moogro - Oct 15, 2013 at 4:47 PM

        Gangs of celebrity-bangers, too.

    • hustleandflomax - Oct 15, 2013 at 2:00 PM

      But I do agree with you on the overpriced lousy beer comment. Not like they have a choice–not going to find a good microbrew in a place called BUSCH Stadium.

      • tridecagon - Oct 15, 2013 at 6:06 PM

        False – they actually have Schlafly Pale Ale and other microbrews available in Busch now. Just gotta know where to look.

      • hustleandflomax - Oct 15, 2013 at 6:21 PM

        I know that, but they don’t make it easy to find there. Not sure I’ve ever seen/heard the vendors walking up and down the aisles yelling “Cold Schlafly” or “Cold Boulevard”, although that would be fan-fucking-tastic if they did. It’s gotten a bit better over the past few years, definitely.

  5. losanginsight - Oct 15, 2013 at 11:39 AM

    Adam pumps his fist after ever strike out like a freshman playing on varsity.

    • hustleandflomax - Oct 15, 2013 at 6:22 PM

      EVERY strikeout, huh? Suuuure. For a guy that averages 200+ strikeouts a year, his arms must be tired of all that pumping.

  6. bobthis - Oct 15, 2013 at 11:59 AM

    The Cards did the same jumping up and down on EVERY hit in games 1&2. Being the big cry babies they have always been I’m not surprised they did it again. A 24 year old rookie ,Puig, thought the ball was going out in a National League pennant game and tossed the bat. The horror. If the Cards had somehow won that game they never would have said a word.

  7. wolfwithlightsaber - Oct 15, 2013 at 12:01 PM

    I was there last night, and from my seat it looked like that ball was gone, couple that with a kid that has the weight of the team on his back and 0 for 11, in a series his team is behind 2 to Nil, cmon Cards.

    If there was ever a reason to dislike you more…

    • hustleandflomax - Oct 15, 2013 at 6:31 PM

      You don’t need a reason! Haven’t you been paying attention?? The St. Louis Cardinals, despite the fact that their payroll is the lowest of the remaining playoff teams and despite the fact that much of their lineup is homegrown and not overpriced free-agent splurges, are the new EVIL Empire of MLB!

  8. Carl Hancock - Oct 15, 2013 at 12:09 PM

    I didn’t see anything wrong with what Adrian Gonzalez did. He was fired up and didn’t do anything too over the top. In my mind it’s not much different than what Wacha and Yadier Molina did when Wacha got out of a bases loaded jam with a strikeout. They both came off the field completely pumped, and it showed.

    Puig, however, definitely has a lot to learn. He was already celebrating a home run… although it wasn’t a home run. Who knows, maybe had he actually been running full speed out of the box instead of his batt tossing, arms up, admiring his work theatrics at the plate he may have had a shot at an inside the park home run.

    Then when Puig did make it into third the celebrations began anew. I guess he forgot how stupid he looked at home plate when he assumed he had just hit a home run.

    I love Puig’s enthusiasm for the game. He flat out loves to play baseball. But he’s also a rookie and has a lot to learn about the game, such as not assuming you hit a home run until you know… it actually leaves the park. Maybe when you have 10 years in the league and know enough about your game to know when you have indeed hit a home run without even watching it that would be acceptable. But even then it also might get you drilled in the ribs.

    I wouldn’t be surprised if we see Puig take one in the ribs if an opportunity presents itself that doesn’t put the Cardinals in a precarious position. They aren’t going to be stupid and hit Puig with no outs in a close game. But if they have a big lead and 2 outs and nobody on with Puig up to bat? I could see him getting drilled in the ribs.

    What Puig hasn’t learned is respect for the game. Part of respecting the game is respecting your opponent. You can be enthusiastic and emotional while still respecting the game and your opponent. But it’s something that comes with experience. Puig doesn’t have that experience yet, nor does he have a frame of reference given his background.

    He’s still super young and this is his first season in the big leagues with barely any time in the minor leagues. It’s like he was dropped on this earth from a foreign planet. He has a lot to learn about the game of baseball. But it’ll come over time.

    I just hope he starts doing a better job of taking the advice of the veterans on that team who have been trying to coach him all season long. Puigs antics have been tolerated by his own team because they have been winning. In the very beginning he had rubbed almost everyone on the team wrong, including the coaching staff. If they had not turned their season around and started winning the way they did, his teammates wouldn’t have been so tolerant of his antics. As much as respecting the game means respecting your opponents, it also means respecting your teammates… especially the veterans who can teach you a thing or two and help you be a better player.

    This series is playing out exactly as I thought it would… exciting. Two great teams playing a great series. I can’t wait to see how it plays out no matter how excruciating it is being a fan of one of the teams involved.

    • stlouis1baseball - Oct 15, 2013 at 12:21 PM

      Well stated Carl. And your last season was dead on as well. This series is wearing me out. I mean that literally. I feel like I am playing the damn games…giving 100%. As cheesy as that sounds…it’s the truth. And I know it isn’t healthy! Lol!

    • kevinbnyc - Oct 15, 2013 at 1:26 PM

      I can remember several occasions where Sammy Sosa hit a ball and did his hop out of the box as if he’d hit a home run, but then it wasn’t a home run. Nobody cared about that, so why do you care so much about this?

      • stlouis1baseball - Oct 15, 2013 at 1:38 PM

        Why does who care about it? I don’t. I laughed. Laughed hard. Read my posts. I said I find him comical. I also said he is good for the game.

        What I care about is C.C. intentionally “reporting” on something out of context to generate comments, views or otherwise further and agenda. It’s wrong and it isn’t professional.
        In fact, I find it unethical.

      • kevinbnyc - Oct 15, 2013 at 2:38 PM

        I was talking about Mr. Hancock’s novel about how Puig needs to learn “respect for the game.” Sammy Sosa was in the league for 15+ years without anyone ever telling him he lacked “respect” despite his various shenanigans. People just loved watching him have fun.

      • Carl Hancock - Oct 15, 2013 at 6:06 PM

        Nobody cared because by that time Sosa was a veteran and he got laughed at for it. Had he been a rookie doing that he wouldn’t have got laughed at, he would have got drilled in the ribs. By the time Sosa was doing it he had long been in the league and it was a bit like Canseco allowing a home run bounce off his head and go over the fence… you just laugh. But a rookie should not be doing this. Celebrating when he made it to 3rd safely? No problem. Celebrating with a theatrical bat toss acting as if you just hit a home run to win the World Series when in fact you didn’t hit a home run and your team is down 2-0 in a best of 7 series and it’s the middle of the game? Not acceptable.

    • gostlcards5 - Oct 15, 2013 at 4:53 PM

      Carl, well said. I agree…no problem with the actions by Gonzalez or Puig. I don’t know necessarily about the jawing when Gonzo was at 3rd, but hell, little leaguers will do it…clap, dance around, jaw a little, to get the pitcher’s attention.

  9. Carl Hancock - Oct 15, 2013 at 12:24 PM

    I just read Beltran’s full quote on what he said about Puig and anyone that is slamming the Cardinals for being whiners, etc. is obviously clueless and basing those opinions on the simple fact that anyone on the Cardinals complained about it.

    Here is exactly what Carlos Beltran said:

    “When you try to do those things sometimes, you know, you get that attention,” Beltran said. “And you don’t want to wake up nobody. I always thought if you hit a home run off a pitcher, you’ve got to make him believe he made a mistake. You don’t wake him up. Or next time, the pitcher’s going to be more focused with you and he’s going to try harder to get you out.

    “So he will learn. I don’t think he’s a bad kid. I just think he doesn’t know right now.”

    You know what? He’s 100% right. What Beltran had to say had nothing to do with thinking he celebrates too much. Beltran’s take on it is more psychological. And given Beltran’s career AND his post-season performance i’d say Beltran has more relevant input into this situation than anyone commenting on this BLOG post.

    Hell, even Puig’s own manager admitted he didn’t like it:

    “I’d like to see him run right away, honestly,” he said. “But obviously, he thought it was gone. I’ve been dealing with this all year. He’s just emotional, and it’s those areas that we want him to keep getting better at.”

    His “I’ve been dealing with this all year.” quote goes back to what I said in my previous comment. Puig has a lot to learn and it’s not just about showing up the other team, his antics don’t sit well with his own teammates or his manager. The only reason why they have been putting up with it is because they are winning.

    Had he come up and behaved this way and the Dodgers continued to play mediocre baseball while he still acted this way whenever he did something good, you can be damn sure they would have squashed it one way or another, even if that meant sending him back down to the minors.

    Puig is an amazing talent and if he’d actually stop and take the advice of his veteran teammates, and even his opponents… Beltran just explained exactly why you don’t show up a pitcher… then he could raise his game even more.

    People think the whole “showing up the pitcher” thing is some sort of respect thing. I think Beltran explained it pretty good above. Don’t make the pitcher think you beat him even if you did, make him think he made a mistake. Otherwise you can be damn sure he’s not going to make that mistake again.

    • fearlessleader - Oct 15, 2013 at 12:51 PM

      How dare you squelch everyone’s hyper-reactionary fun with your reasoned and intelligent comments? Who do you think you are, Post-Season Legend Carlos Beltran??

      Thanks for the thoughtful responses.

    • stlouis1baseball - Oct 15, 2013 at 12:58 PM

      Context is a wonderful thing Carl. Of course, had C.C. included the entire quote it would have resulted in far less drama (and subsequent comments). Further, he even piece meals Wainwright’s comments to make it appear that he was complaining about Gonzalez’ celebration with the Mickey Mouse comment. When you clearly see (AFTER READING THE ENTIRE QUOTE)…Wainwright was referring to Gonzalez talking to him on 3rd base being “Mickey Mouse.” Again…providing context/the full quote(s) would have not resulted in any drama, nearly the number of comments, or the additional hate/dislike. Which I feel is/was precisely C.C.’s motives. Sooo…jump on the hatetrain!

  10. psunick - Oct 15, 2013 at 12:38 PM

    A guy with depth perception issues? Playing in the outfield?

  11. hustleandflomax - Oct 15, 2013 at 12:51 PM

    As a Cards fan, I have zero problem with anything exhibited by Dodger players last night. Wainwright comes off looking bad here, but I think he deserves a pass because comments like that are way out of character for him. He was clearly pissed about losing and just shouldn’t have said anything at all.

    • stlouis1baseball - Oct 15, 2013 at 1:04 PM

      Read the article to see his full quotation Flomax. It provides context. He was referring to Adrian talking to him from 3rd base while he was throwing a pitch. Had nothing to do with celebration, excitement, etc… A link is provided in one of the comments on the 1st page.

      Capeporpoise and Fearlessleader both provide links to said article.

      But be prepared to think less of C.C. once you read the article.

      • hustleandflomax - Oct 15, 2013 at 1:51 PM

        Yeah, the context of the whole situation would have been lovely. I guess when you’re a “blogger”, you can cherry-pick whatever you want to make your point and not have to be accountable.

      • gostlcards5 - Oct 15, 2013 at 2:27 PM

        Yes. It’s Craig doing his full “Cardinals are the Evil Empire of the NL” hater act.

        Seriously, Craig, it’s getting ridiculous. You make both quotes sound like Wainwright and Beltran are horrible and complaining….blah blah blah, when they’re not, plain and simple. I used to like reading your stuff, but the last 2 weeks have made me lose a lot of respect for you. Go get some Midol or something.

    • gostlcards5 - Oct 15, 2013 at 2:29 PM

      I agree. I have zero problem with what either one of them did, save Puig probably costing himself an inside-the-park HR for not hustling out of the box. Seriously, did you see that guy turn the afterburners on halfway to second? Dude was FLYING!

  12. jdillydawg - Oct 15, 2013 at 1:07 PM

    The Cards were pretty exuberant in their extra innings win in Game 1. Completely out of character. I had to do a double take and make sure it was actually them. I was thoroughly disappointed in them. I would expect nothing short of solemn handshakes and “Well dones” as they walk rigidly back to the locker room lamenting what miserable lives they lead, beholden to expectations that don’t actually exist.

  13. misterj167 - Oct 15, 2013 at 1:08 PM

    What Puig did was way different from what Gomez did against the Braves. Puig’s enthusiasm may be annoying if you don’t want the Dodgers to win, but it’s clearly just a guy having fun and enjoying the game and not putting the other team down. Gomez was angry from the beginning and spent the entire time running around the bases screaming at people, McCann was right to not let the guy diss his team.

  14. howieK - Oct 15, 2013 at 1:12 PM

    This is bull shit reporting, Craig. You’re better than that. Do a better job and don’t give people information out of context. So disappointing.

  15. lawrinson20 - Oct 15, 2013 at 1:15 PM

    I’m a fan of neither team. What Gonzalez did was strikingly surprising. I’ve never seen such emotion from him. I thought it was over the top, by baseball standards, and that’s all we can go on. I like emotion. But, when everyone is supposed to be conducting themselves with the same set of standards for decorum, Adrian overstepped those standards. Not sure how anyone could disagree. Surely, he wasn’t ‘showing anyone up,’ but that seems to be irrelevant, again — by baseball standards. You can whoop it up to your heart’s content if you hit a walk-off, but on the bases, overt gesticulations are bound to be characterized as “Mickey Mouse.”

    Puig, well, damn. The guy’s got a ten dollar body and a ten cent head. I don’t know if he’s stupid, immature, or oblivious, but he seems like a stew of all three. He’s a trainwreck. An exciting ‘disaster.’ You can’t Not watch him, but at this point, someone’s got to get him to understand the traditions, conventions, and rules. He’s dynamic on the field, but also runs himself into outs. He hits like Paul Bunyon, but if he had a clue at the plate, he’d be on base more often. He may just be on the wrong team. Who’s going to set him straight? The manager who was on the hot seat mid season? The quiet veteran, Gonzalez, who was noted to decidedly NOT be a leader in Boston? Who? The kid needs guidance by example.

    • jdillydawg - Oct 15, 2013 at 1:22 PM

      Maybe we should have players wear suits and ties instead of uniforms. No baseball caps. Seriously, most stadiums are inside, it’s not polite to wear hats inside.

    • stlouis1baseball - Oct 15, 2013 at 1:43 PM

      This is starting to piss me off. Does anyone care to get their facts straight?

      He said Gonzalez talking to him on 3rd base WHILE HE WAS THROWIN A PITCH was “Mickey Mouse.”

      Wainwright also said this…

      “Those guys are fired up. This is playoff baseball, they want it over there.”

      Do those things sound like a guy complaining about excessive celebrations?

      Please know I appreciate your post. I also appreciate you know knowing any different because C.C. intentionally “reported” on this completely out of context. Facts? Who the hell needs them? Unless they are bound together very tightly in the context of sabermetrics of course.

  16. rythestunner - Oct 15, 2013 at 1:40 PM

    How come we never hear about the game’s winner ever crying about opposing team celebrations on HRs?

    It only seems to come out when said team loses the game. That kind of points to the real issue at hand being sore losing.

  17. rythestunner - Oct 15, 2013 at 1:42 PM

    Also, why is baseball a “kid’s game”? I don’t think the initial incarnations of baseball were created for the intention of being played by only kids, and I don’t think that was Abner Doubleday’s intention either.

    Hitting a baseball with a bat is one of the most difficult things to do in sports. A “kid’s game” tends to be something that is more reliant on luck.

  18. hustleandflomax - Oct 15, 2013 at 1:56 PM

    Shocker: Blogger cherry picks quotes out of their context to form opinions that align with his own

  19. stlray - Oct 15, 2013 at 2:13 PM

    This story is trying to make something out of nothing. All but 1 cardinal said they didn’t see him do it or they didn’t care. Beltran was the only one to comment and he only said that Puig is young and will learn over time that you don’t want to do something to pump up the other team.
    There was no whining by the Cardinals.

  20. louhudson23 - Oct 15, 2013 at 2:22 PM

    So the young man pulls a dumbass move,costs himself a likely ITPHR . What possible baseball reason can there be for this? All these comments attempting to justify it to fit some anti this/pro that narrative simply doesn’t work….,he screwed up,could have cost his team,all for the sake if showing his ass ….A mortal sin? No. An avoidable error in judgement with negative game play consequences and zero game play justification? Yes.

  21. racksie - Oct 15, 2013 at 2:34 PM

    I an go either way on this one, but the fact he failed to run hard from the get go, and hit third standing up says more about how the ball was played, than a guy getting jacked up because he knew got all of it, and maybe could have gone home had he ran hard out of the box.

    • sabu666 - Oct 15, 2013 at 2:42 PM

      Exactly, if Beltran would have played the ball better, we would all be laughing how the dumb a$$ got thrown out at 3rd!

  22. sportsdrenched - Oct 15, 2013 at 2:36 PM

    Is this series that devoid of actual story lines that this is what we’re talking about?

    • gostlcards5 - Oct 15, 2013 at 3:00 PM

      The Cardinals have the lowest team batting average through 3 games in postseason history, yet lead the series 2-1, so I would say “no”.

  23. losanginsight - Oct 15, 2013 at 2:59 PM

    I guess this answers the questions of which team has the best fans that react like crying babies. Keep pumping your fist Adam and the Dodgers will keep celebrating hits.

    • gostlcards5 - Oct 15, 2013 at 4:47 PM

      The people that I’m reading here don’t seem to be reacting “like crying babies”. Clearly, you (as did Craig) are failing to take the comments in context. Neither Waino nor Beltran was complaining. What I said above, as the others defending the Cardinal players, are just stating the facts.

      If the context was different, I would agree that the players should shut up, but read what you want to into it. That was Craig’s intent, apparently.

  24. suckit619 - Oct 15, 2013 at 3:15 PM

    Cardinals always crying…..

  25. whereyaat - Oct 15, 2013 at 3:42 PM

    Deadspin did a great job of documenting the Cardinals’ idiotic hypocrisy:

    • moogro - Oct 15, 2013 at 4:53 PM

      This is the winning post.

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