Baseball blowhard Vicente Padilla was at it again yesterday as he insulted Mark Teixeira -- and half of the world's population.
The journeyman pitcher/baserunner enthusiast spoke with NESN Saturday, two days after giving up the go-ahead, two RBI triple to Teixeira in Friday night's Yankees win. And he fired back at Teixeira, who has had a long-standing feud with Padilla for throwing high and inside. Oh, but Padilla didn't just criticize Teixeira. No, he managed to insult women as well.
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"I just think he's scared to face me," Padilla said. "I don't throw at people to hit them on purpose. I throw inside, and I've always thrown inside. It's not my problem if the ball hits someone. I'm worried about throwing strikes, and I'm going to keep playing my game. ... In this sport, as competitive ball players, we get pretty fired up. So I think, maybe, [Teixeira] picked the wrong profession. I think he'd be better off playing a women's sport."
Suffice it to say no one's ever accused Padilla of being a thinking man's pitcher. Not exactly Greg Maddux here. And let's get this straight, Padilla is totally full of it. He's a headhunter plain and simple. You want to hit a guy to send a message, that's fine. But you don't aim for his head. Hit him in the back. Hit him in the leg. He'll get the picture. With all the research being done on concussions in every sport, it's idiotic to throw at someone's head.
Teixeira has been hit by Padilla three times in 18 plate appearances. I saw all of those. He clearly was headhunting.
We got some indication as to why the animosity exists, as Padilla accused Teixeira of being prejudicial against Latino players when the two were teammates in Texas.
"The problem is he talks about all the wrong things that others have done, but the things he's done -- against the Latinos [on the Rangers] -- he doesn't open his mouth about," Padilla said. "He once threatened me and said he was going to hit me with a bat, and that's when we were playing on the same team. And then, he also had problems with Frank Francisco, our closer back then. But he doesn't talk about that, does he? Then, of course, he goes on and makes those comments about me."
Teixeira called those accusations "crazy." By the way, NESN's Dan Duquette took the opportunity to suggest the war of words would be the spark the Red Sox need to get back in the playoff race. Uh, no. They need some guys to hit well and some guys to pitch well. And maybe get rid of the guy with 45 baserunners in 32 innings pitched.
Follow Metro New York Sports Editor Mark Osborne on Twitter @MetroNYSports. Whatever Padilla did to prompt Teixeira to say he'd hit him with a bat, he probably deserved it.