There were many hilarious and pleasing things about the Nats sweeping Boston in Fenway over the weekend, but the most hilarious and pleasing might have been this: a distraught Bobby Valentine complaining about the umpiring after Sunday’s game.
Boston.com put together a handy video compilation of Valentine’s many post-game complaints, which included lines like these:
* “You’ve got guys trying to bust their butt, battling their butt off. It’s not right. Good umpires had a real bad series this series, REAL bad series, and it went one way. There should be a review.”
* “I thought [the Nats pitchers] pitched well. I thought they got pitches. In key situations. That weren’t strikes.”
* “The game is simple. Throw it over the plate, call it a strike, don’t throw it over the plate, call it a ball. Simple. That’s all. It’s all anybody asks. And I know it’s been going on for 100 years. I’m not the first one to say it. But this was a pretty lousy series.”
Even Dustin Pedroia got involved, again via The Globe: “You don’t want [the umpires] to come into play and stuff like that,” he said. “It’s hard enough playing a good game against good pitching and good players.”
Valentine was especially unhappy with a called ball to Roger Bernadina in the top of the ninth that could have been strike 3; the Shark later doubled in Bryce Harper with the winning run.
Well, I would direct Valentine’s attention to this strike-zone PitchFx chart of Michael Morse’s at-bat with the bases loaded in the top of the third on Sunday. You’ll note that pitch 4 and pitch 6 were both called strikes, despite being out of the zone. Morse struck out looking.
“Throw it over the plate, call it a strike, don’t throw it over the plate, call it a ball. Simple.”
Next, I would direct Valentine to a giant box of tissues.
BECAUSE YOU DON’T READ THE PAPER...
Boz is over the moon: “After 111 years as — almost always — a baseball afterthought, this Washington team, with the second-best record in the majors and a charismatic cast, has caught the whole sport’s eye.”
Thomas Robinson, Michael Kidd-Gilchrist and Bradley Beal — the three players most often linked with the Wizards — will all work out in D.C. this week.
TWEET OF THE NIGHT
Ian Desmond has evidently adopted Bernadina’s nickname. This came just moments after Bernadina won Sunday’s game.
The SHARK!!!!!— Ian Desmond (@IanDesmond20) June 10, 2012
QUOTE OF THE NIGHT
Tyler Clippard. Bringing heat:
“I know we’ve shown the baseball world what kind of team we are. This was kind of a statement series for us in doing that. They’re definitely a good club, and I think we’re better. I think we’re a lot better.”
PHOTO OF THE DAY
WHAT TO WATCH TODAY
The Nats are in Toronto at 7 on MASN. Game 6 of the Stanley Cup Finals is on NBC at 8. All TV/Radio listings are here.
MORE NATS STUFF
CBS Sports’s Scott Miller: “As Strasburg, Bryce Harper and the rest of the gang authoring baseball’s best and most fun story in 2012 took aim on The Hub, you couldn’t miss the legend growing in both directions.”
Mark Zuckerman: “If the playoffs began tomorrow, the Nats and Pirates would meet in the NLDS.”
Nats Enquirer busts out the “Sweep Caroline” headline.
Here’s an ardent complaint that Nats fans aren’t voting their guys into the All-Star game.
MORE OTHER STUFF
Here’s a photo of Andre the Giant holding Joe Theismann in the ‘70s.
Dave Zirin in The Nation on why you should root against the Thunder: “Anyone who cares about the relationship of teams to their cities and decries the way pro sports is used as an instrument of corporate looting should know who to root for and whom to root against.”
John Wall is exchanging tweets with Rob Kardashian.
A 7-foot python was found on the side of a road in Towson.
Could Phil Mendelson become the first white mayor of the District, post-home rule?