BRONX, NY – Apparently Francisco Rodriguez did care about Brian Bruney’s comments.
According to eyewitnesses on the field, the Mets closer and Yankees reliever had to be separated by teammates after the two became heated in an exchange in left field of Yankee Stadium during batting practice before today’s game. All of this stems from comments made by Bruney while on a rehab assignment in Trenton.
Bruney was asked by the Hunterdon County Democrat about Friday’s game when Luis Castillo dropped the game ending popup which resulted in the Yankees 9-8 win, to which he responded: “Unbelievable. I’ve never seen anything like that. I have, but in high school,” he said and then went after K-Rod. “It couldn’t happen to a better guy on the mound, either. He’s got a tired act.
“Two years ago, when (K-Rod) lost the game – I don’t know if anybody saw it, I did – he was in Oakland. He was pitching for Anaheim. He didn’t get a call. So he was like complaining. The catcher threw it back, and (K-Rod) just kind of did one of these. (Bruney held out his glove at his side with indifference.) It hit off his glove and bounced behind. The guy from third scored to win the game. So he gets what he deserves.”
Of course, with the Subway Series going on, the New York media picked up on the story and went to Rodriguez to get his reaction. Although he dismissed the question before the game, K-Rod did delve into it afterwards.
“If it was coming out from somebody big, like Mariano (Rivera) – somebody who’s been around and is good at what he does – I will respect that comment. I might pay attention to it,” Rodriguez said. “But somebody like that, it doesn’t bother me,” said Rodriguez, who is 1-1 with a 0.57 ERA and 16 saves in 17 chances. “He better keep his mouth shut and do his job, not worry about somebody else. I don’t even know who the guy is. I’m not going to waste my time with that guy. Instead of sending messages through the paper, next time when you see me at Citi Field, come up to me and say it to my face. He’s always been on the DL, that’s all I know.”
So, Bruney, who stood by his comments after he made his way to Yankee Stadium during the game, apparently took Rodriguez up on his offer and the two had words.
According to witnesses, Mike Pelfrey was the first one to break up the altercation and Jose Veras was also in on the breakup.
Bruney, though, is still on the disabled list and will be coming off on Tuesday. So unless Rodriguez wants to take retribution against one of Bruney’s teammates, nothing else will probably happen today. Yet, the Yankees do visit Citi Field a week from Friday, so this may not be over.