Although I imagine the tone of his response was somewhat friendly, if not joke-y, Reds manager Dusty Baker had a surprising response to Matt Garza’s comments about Johnny Cueto throwing over David DeJesus’s head yesterday.
“You got something to say, you go over there and tell him,” Baker told Reds beat writer Mark Sheldon. “Johnny ain’t running. Know what I mean? A guy can say what he wants to say, but it’s better if you go over and say it to his face.”
“I just wish, just put them in a room, let them box and let it be over with, know what I mean?” Baker continued. “I always said this. Let it be like hockey. Let them fight, somebody hits the ground and then it’ll be over with. I’m serious about that. I come from a different school. Guys didn’t talk as much. You just did it.”
I have a strong suspicion that, were the stakes high enough, Garza would have no problem saying any of this to Cueto’s face or “just doing it,” as it were.
Baker is sticking up for his guy, as you’d expect any manager to do, but this is a bit much. Garza had a good point, as Cueto’s decision to throw over the head of DeJesus – because DeJesus stepped out of the box too much? – was ridiculous. On the other hand, the throw was way over DeJesus’s head, and probably didn’t put him in terrible danger.
It’s a lot of talk, and we’ll see what comes out of it when the teams face each other again in a couple weeks.
For the record, each of Garza and Cueto are officially listed at 215 pounds, but Garza has about five inches on Cueto at 6’4″ versus 5’11″. My money’s on Garza.