Disgraceful as was the now-infamous brawl between the San Diego Padres and Los Angeles Dodgers, occurring just four days before the pageantry set for Chavez Ravine for Jackie Robinson Day, this is overshadowed, in part, by Major League Baseball's failure to take such incidents seriously.
It is shameful that the instigator of the incident, Carlos Quentin, was suspended for a mere eight games, particularly given that the man for whose injury he is responsible, Dodgers' ace pitcher Zack Grienke, will miss at least two months of his first season with the Dodgers with a broken collarbone.
I am not a fan or admirer of Grienke, whom I find to be a cocky and arrogant young man. But neither Grienke nor any other player deserves to be seriously injured within play for any reason. Additionally, the example that this sets for young, impressionable fans is putrid.
If Quentin believes that Grienke has been throwing at him, the worst means of handling the situation is to violently charge the mound, creating chaos and mayhem on the field.
If Major League Baseball wished to end bench-clearing brawls, it could easily do so. My idea would be to suspend for 60 days without pay any individual who initiates or joins a fight.
The ugly spectacle witnessed in Los Angeles is no way for players of “America's Pastime” to behave. There is no place for thuggery in this great game. Shame on Commissioner Bud Selig for displaying the attitude of “boys will be boys” by dispensing taps on the wrist to the offenders.
Oren M. Spiegler
Upper Saint Clair
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