With just 10 days left until the start of baseball’s regular season, both fans and players are more than ready for things to get underway. There’s just one problem, spring training is still going on. Though most players are ready and in game shape, they still have to go through the motions of playing in pretend games for at least another week.
This has clearly taken a toll on some players. If you need evidence of that, look no further than New York Mets infielder Asdrubal Cabrera. The frustrations of spring seemed to get the best of Cabrera on Thursday, as he was pretty much ejected from a game while running down to first base.
We have to admit, we’ve seen a lot of weird baseball things here at The Stew, but we’ve never seen a player nearly thrown out before reaching first base.
For those wondering how the heck something like this happens, allow us to explain. In the fourth inning of Thursday’s game against the Washington Nationals, Cabrera stepped in against Nats prospect Erick Fedde. On the 3-0 pitch, Cabrera attempted to call for time, but it wasn’t granted by home plate umpire Angel Hernandez. Fedde continued with his windup and threw a strike directly down the middle of the plate.
At that point, Cabrera briefly exchanged words with Hernandez. While it doesn’t appear he said anything inappropriate, it was clear he was upset that Hernandez didn’t grant him time.
On the following pitch, Cabrera ripped a single to right field. As he started running down to first, he turned his head and glanced back at Hernandez for a brief second. If you can find the right camera angle, it’s at this point that Hernandez readies his arm as if he’s going to eject Cabrera. But since Cabrera wasn’t looking at him, Hernandez didn’t pull the trigger.
Don’t worry, though, it’s coming. Cabrera eventually reached first base, turned to look at Hernandez and is tossed. Cabrera did say something to Hernandez, though it’s unclear whether he was tossed before or after that happened. With Hernandez, it’s tough to know. He has a bit of a reputation.
With that, Cabrera embarked on a slow, lengthy walk from the dugout to the outfield fence. He took his time doing so, letting Hernandez know he was fed up with the situation.
In 10 days, everything will be right in the world again. The games will matter and the players will care. Angel Hernandez, well, he’ll probably still be ornery, but perhaps that will be the surest sign that baseball has officially returned.
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