News

Rosie DiManno: Blue Jays Ken Giles, who punched himself in the head last season, puts teammate in line — loudly

Rosie DiManno: Blue Jays  Ken Giles, who punched himself in the head last season, puts teammate in line — loudly
Top Stories
Blue Jays closer Ken Giles made like the Enola Gray of profanity bombardment before Thursday’s game at Dunedin Stadium, dropping a load on teammate David Paulino. Who had it coming, frankly.

Ken Giles was held back a day after dealing with the flu, but he didn’t hold back on teammate David Paulino over the latter’s effort in fielding drills.  (Michael Reaves / GETTY IMAGES)

The tightly wound Giles, who famously punched himself in the head last season as he left the mound after a poor performance, was apparently annoyed that Paulino was dogging it during infield drills. Paulino seemed to have zero interest in covering first base in the exercise, like the rest of his pitching brethren.

To paraphrase: What the f---?!

To paraphrase: Do you, David, not want to play for the Jays in 2018? But punchier.

Manager Charlie Montoyo was standing not far distant when the episode unfolded. But said nothing. And Paulino, thereafter, seemed radioactive, given a wide berth by the rest of the squad as he came off the field.

If Montoyo was looking for evidence of a recast clubhouse coming together at spring training, this was actually it. Because the takeaway was not Paulino getting dressed down by a teammate but Giles making it clear that the work matters, that laggardness won’t be tolerated.

Funny thing, though. Giles had been scheduled to pitch at some point in this game against the visiting Yankees, yet he never appeared. Joe Biagini came out in the ninth instead. When reporters got to Giles’ locker later, it was obvious he had already changed back into civvies and left. There was no Paulino sighting either.

Montoyo tried to downplay any potential fuss. “Believe me, I’ve been around the game for a long time. That happens. I kind of like it, to tell you the truth. There was a disagreement and now they’re fine. I talked to both of them and it’s all good.”

The skipper agreed that what he saw was Giles taking a leadership role arising from the incident, talking the walk so to speak. “That’s what it looks like to me.”

Both Giles and Paulino came to Toronto in the trade last year that sent crack closer Roberto Osuna to Houston. So, they’re not strangers to each other. And Paulino was — how to put this? — allegedly not popular within the Astros organization.

Montoyo said he had no wish to “get into it” with the two moundsmen. “Because it got resolved with the players. And that’s great. I believe in the clubhouse takes care of itself and they did.”

Don’t go reading anything into Giles’ no-show on the pitching itinerary, Montoyo added.

“It happened before that,” Montoyo added, of Giles’ request. “It has nothing to do with what happened there.”

The closer has been ailing with the flu recently. “He needed it,” Montoyo said. “He was sick. He didn’t feel right today. Kind of behind a little bit (on his pitching schedule). So he felt like he needed another day to regroup.’’

Much as we’d like to make a mountain out of a molehill, the dust seems to have already settled on this little drama. And, you know, one man’s F-bomb is another man’s heck.

Giles is now slotted to pitch on Friday in Clearwater against the Phillies.

In this game, which ended in a 1-1 draw, Matt Shoemaker, making his fourth appearance, gave up one run on four hits and struck out three through 51/3 innings.

“Overall, pretty close,” said the bearded right-hander of his spring training progression. “Physically I felt great, just been working on some mechanical stuff, some timing. It’s coming together.”

Montoyo has indicated that he’s leaning toward Shoemaker as his No. 2 in the starting rotation, between Marcus Stroman and Aaron Sanchez. Though he apparently hasn’t yet shared that plan with Shoemaker. “No, not at all,” said Shoemaker, who signed a one-year deal with the Jays in late December. “We’ve just been ... go out there, get ready for the season, and let the rest take care of itself.”

DRIBBLERS: Major League Baseball and the players’ association on Thursday announced a whole slew of new rules — some not implemented until next season — affecting everything from the trade deadline, the all-star game, roster size and on-field strategy. Rather significantly all pitchers will have to pitch to a minimum of three batters or to the end of a half-inning. Which spells the end of the lefty relief specialist often summoned to get one batter out. Montoyo said he hadn’t yet had time to study he changes. “It was funny. I was talking to the umpires and they said, ‘We don’t know either.’ Maybe they were kidding.: The manager didn’t seem bothered by the impact of the minimum batters faced. “As long as everybody’s the same, I’m fine with it. I’m sure they thought about it long and hard, both sides.” … Ex-Jays shortstop Troy Tulowitzki was booed relentlessly every time he came to the plate ... Right-hander Bud Norris will make his first spring appearance on Friday … Right-hander Clay Buchholz, being cautiously brought along after his 2018 campaign was cut short by a strained flexor mass in his pitching elbow, will throw his first bullpen on Friday … Vladimir Guerrero Jr., out with an oblique injury, has been sent to the minor-league camp to continue a three-week rehab stint.
Read more on Toronto Star
News Topics :
RELATED STORIES :
Sports
The Blue Jays added pitching depth Thursday night, inking a major league deal with starter Clay Buchholz and a minor league deal with reliever Bud Norris. General manager Ross Atkins had long...
Sports
The Blue Jays manager announced Thursday morning that relievers Ryan Tepera and John Axford will miss at least a chunk of time with elbow injuries, news that will change the...
Sports
After the Blue Jays traded left hander J.A. Happ for a pair of position players, general manager Ross Atkins said the club planned to switch its focus to increasing its pitching...
Sports
CLEARWATER, FLA.—For the past two seasons, the bullpen has been the foundation of the Blue Jays’ pitching staff. Relievers were responsible for 5962/3 innings in 2017, the third heaviest workload in...
Sports
CLEARWATER, FLA.—“Was there a four man outfield when I was pitching I didn’t even notice, to be honest.” Satchel Paige once famously said “Don’t look back. Something might be gaining on...