Although the teams just played an incident-free three-game series, ill will between the Padres and Dodgers seems to be ramping up in the wake of last week's incident between San Diego left fielder Carlos Quentin and Los Angeles right-hander Zack Greinke.
Padres president and CEO Tom Garfinkel on Thursday formally apologized to Greinke and the Dodgers for comments he made the day after the April 11 incident at Petco Park. Quentin charged Greinke after the pitcher hit him with a full-count pitch. Greinke suffered a fractured collarbone in the ensuing melee, and Quentin was suspended for eight games and missed this week's series at Dodger Stadium (which was swept by the Padres).
The day after the scuffle, Garfinkel, in a meeting with season ticket holders, said Greinke intentionally hit Quentin with the pitch and blamed Greinke's injury on his decision to lower his shoulder to block the charging Quentin.
To throw fuel on the flames, Garfinkel drew notice to Greinke's well-known social anxiety disorder by implying he has autism.
Garfinkel asked the crowd to keep his comments private, saying, "We're in the trust tree here, in the nest." But someone recorded it and an audio tape was obtained by Yahoo Sports.
"He threw at him on purpose, OK?" Garfinkel told a group of approximately 50 Padres fans attending a regular session for season ticket holders. "That's what happened. They can say 3-and-2 count, 2-1 game, no one does that. Zack Greinke is a different kind of guy. He has social anxiety disorder. He doesn't interact well with teammates, he doesn't have meals with teammates. He spends his life studying to get hitters out. Anyone seen 'Rain Man'? He's a very smart guy. ...
"When Zack Greinke threw at his head a couple times, (Quentin) let it be known through teammates and intermediaries and others that if he does that again, he's going to have a problem ... so Zack was very aware of that and Zack never apologized. ... He knew darn well that was going on."
Meanwhile, immediately following the incident, someone tweeted on the Dodgers official twitter account "Stay classy, San Diego." And Dodgers manager Don Mattingly publicly called Quentin "an idiot" with "no understanding of the game of baseball," theories Quentin has vehemently denied.
The only incident during the Padres' sweep at Dodger Stadium was the fact that San Diego outfielder Kyle Blanks was hit three times by pitches, including in his final two at-bats Wednesday after he lined a home run off Dodgers left-handed ace Clayton Kershaw. All three times, Blanks never appeared to consider charging the mound.