I love Rob Neyer's writing. Absolutely can't do without it. I own every single book he's ever put his name on. But this is absurd.
Romero skipped a pitch in the dirt to Pierzynski leading off the eighth inning -- not a terrible pitch, mind you, because AJ had been hacking at similar offerings all night. But late in the game with his team trailing 4-0, Pierzynski resisted the urge to swing. When the ball hit the ground near his feet, he began hopping as if an anvil had landed on his toe. But in fact, nothing had landed on his toe. Replays were clear. He had not been hit.
I don't want to get into the awesome logistics that would be involved here ... but, ethically speaking, isn't there an argument to be made for punishing Pierzynski? He cheated.
In soccer, don't officials have the power to levy discipline against players who feign injury?
In the aftermath, Steve Stone said, "It's just one of those things." As if cheating (and getting away with it) is like an earthquake, or a tornado that formed quickly and touched down before anyone could sound a warning.
No. It's not just one of those things. It's cheating, and in some quarters there are rules against such things.
I know everyone hates AJ Pierzynski, but last I checked, you can't break the rules if there isn't a rule. And if it ain't breaking the rules it ain't cheating.
Last I checked. Debate the ethics of what he did if you want, but until you can show me the rule he broke, let's hold off on calling people cheaters. Unless you want to call every baseball player who tries to decieve the umpire a cheater--which includes every single catcher who has ever framed a borderline strike. Which is, of course, every catcher ever.