Would this were the WWE instead of Major League Baseball. At least then you know Washington Nationals’ outfielder/leadoff hitter/catcher assassin Nyjer Morgan would get what was coming to him, if only at the upcoming pay-per-view.
D.C. Sports Bog has a full list of Morgan’s interesting last couple of weeks, but, as discussed in the story, he took things to a whole other level Wednesday night.
The story starts in St. Louis when Morgan went WAY out of his way to run into Cards catcher Bryan Anderson. Manager Jim Riggleman called the move “unprofessional” and sat Morgan the next day, ostensibly because he didn’t want the two teams throwing at each other all day Sunday. Morgan wasn’t happy, naturally, and said he would “be as professional as [he] can be about the situation” and that “next time, [he'll] slide.”
It’s interesting that he said that last part because he trucked Marlins catcher Brett Hayes Tuesday night, putting the catcher out for the season. While not completely dirty, there is plenty of video evidence suggesting he should have slid into home plate. He might even have been safe. Suddenly, this running into the catcher thing became a pattern, and the Marlins threw at him Wednesday night. Twice. The second time happened most likely because Morgan stole second and third base with the Marlins up big in the middle of the game. Baseball Tonight’s talking heads lambasted him for padding his stats and the cardinal sin of not playing the right way.
Morgan charged the mound after Chris Volstad threw behind him the second time and was subsequently ejected.
Knowing the little about baseball that I do, I think the Marlins dropped the ball. Morgan deserved a way worse beating than what he ended up getting after charging the mound.
But mainly, Jim Riggleman has to do something. Nyjer Morgan is an out-of-control player on a last-place team. He’s already hurt one catcher and started a brawl because of his bush-league antics. It’s no longer about baseball for him. Hell, he’s in the process of appealing a seven-game suspension because he chucked a ball into the stands and injured a fan. The guy’s out of control.
Ideally, this will turn into a Jose Mesa/Omar Vizquel situation. Baseball needs more vendettas like that. Calling out a former teammate for blowing the World Series is messed up.
So is targeting catchers for no reason. This will, of course, get taken care of on the field. I wouldn’t be surprised if the next team the Nats played threw at Morgan just out of principle.