Our team is in last place. Shane Victorino is picking fights with Cliff Lee. Our pets’ heads are falling off!
In the bottom of the fourth inning Friday night, fielding gaffs by Shane Victorino and Hunter Pence, who both lost balls in the twilight, cost Cliff Lee and the Phillies a run.
Lee, who was seemingly bothered by the yet another game with lackluster fielding and little run support, had something to say about the miscues. He and Victorino exchanged words in the dugout, prompting Charlie Manuel to passively intervene. The manager’s efforts worked, briefly, but then Victo kept talking, which led to Lee removing his towel and approaching Victo in his best you wanna go?!* manner.
Brian Schneider and others quickly stepped in to diffuse the situation. For a moment, though, it looked like Lee was going to beat Victorino.
*This isn’t the first time we’ve seen Lee’s "I’m going to fucking kill a man" face. Last year during a brawl against the Giants (which we Zaprudered), Lee briefly appeared that he was going to roundhouse kick Guillermo Mota. He didn’t, unfortunately.
You can’t blame Lee for taking issue with the shitshow in the outfield. Losing playable fly balls on two consecutive plays is hard to swallow, even if there is a legitimate excuse. On the first play, Victorino not only misplayed the ball, but also threw in the towel on the play as David Freese streaked toward third. That’s the part, I’m guessing, that Lee had a problem with– it’s one thing to misplay the ball… it’s another to give up on a play in a close game.
After the game, Lee didn’t want to talk about it. Here’s what he told reporters: [quote via Delco Times beat reporter Ryan Lawrence]
"It's going to stay between us… I'm not going to talk about it."
But were you frustrated with the outfield play in the fourth?
"It happens. Obviously when you have two in one inning, it's tough to see out there. You don't' see that very often but it was kind of a flukey inning. Fortunately we were able to overcome it and win the game."
Victorino didn’t want to talk about it, either. He shooed away CSN’s Jim Salisbury:
Manuel liked it: [quote via Wilmington News Journal beat reporter David Hale]
"They had a little heated words, that’s all right. Baseball is baseball, it’s good sometime. There’s nothing wrong with that. It was no big deal."
Other things that are baseball: Carlos Ruiz blocking the plate on Yadier Molina in the bottom of the eighth:
Summer time, folks. Things are heatin’ up.
Video of Lee and Victorino’s spat after the jump (there was a bit more than what you see, but it's unavailable online).