As my colleague Dayn Perry pointed out late Sunday night, some bad blood between former teammates Troy Tulowitzki and Ubaldo Jimenez seems to have boiled over in spring training play. Jimenez hit Tulowitzki in the elbow with a pitch, causing both benches to clear and the two players to exchange words. This came after some verbal sparring between the two -- also with Carlos Gonzalez on Tulo's side -- earlier this spring.
Tulowitzki will be sidelined just a few days with swelling, as X-rays on his elbow came back negative. Still, the incident did not sit well with the Rockies, specifically manager Jim Tracy, who called the pitch "the most gutless act I've seen in 35 years in the game." (MLB.com)
Further, Tracy wants Jimenez suspended.
"To do something like that and then walk down off the mound, if there's any suggestion whatsoever that the ball got away, I don't want to hear any of that," an angry Tracy said (MLB.com). "He should be suspended. I'm going to be very disappointed if he doesn't get suspended, because he deserves to be suspended."
Shockingly -- please note sarcasm -- Jimenez did say the pitch just got away from him. And the fuming Tracy wasn't yet done:
"Are you [kidding] me? Five days before Opening Day [Friday at Houston] and you're going to take a potshot like that. It was the worst I've ever seen. I've lost all respect for him. That's a very difficult thing for me to say, with all the players that I've had the privilege to manage over the years." (MLB.com)
There were several more quotes from Tracy, but it was pretty much the same. He wants a suspension and has no remaining respect for his former ace, who was traded to the Indians just before the trade deadline last season after a lackluster several months. In fact, Tracy seemed to join Tulowitzki and Gonzalez in the assessment that Jimenez "shut down" on the Rockies last season.
One item of interest: According to CBSSports.com's Jon Heyman, MLB commissioner Bud Selig was at the game. Heyman has heard a suspension is a "consideration" but not a sure thing.
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