Though the White Sox had no shortage of power hitting in last night’s 10-2 win over the Angels, as noted earlier by Rob Warmowski, they’ve likely lost the services of Carlos Quentin for the remainder of 2008. The Chicago Tribune’s ever judgemental Rick Morrissey considers the circumstances surrounding Quentin’s injury, calling the South Side slugger “silly and stupid and more than a little selfish.” (link swiped from Repoz and Baseball Think Factory)
Quentin hurt himself Monday night against Cleveland. The Sox were losing to Cliff Lee, who was doing to them what he does to a lot of teams. When Quentin is frustrated at the plate, he is prone to pounding his fist on the knob of his bat. This time, after fouling off a Lee pitch, he went to hit the knob again but missed, cracking his wrist in the process.
It’s being called a freak injury, but if you’re putting yourself in a situation over and over again where something odd might happen, it isn’t as freaky as it is dumb. An angry scream is just as effective as a punched bat. Laryngitis would not have put him on the disabled list.
Quentin is by no means the only ballplayer who reacts negatively to failure. Major League Baseball history is littered with stories of players who tried to punch out walls only to end up with broken hands. You would call it immaturity, but veteran players have done it, not just 26-year-olds getting their first taste of regular duty.
The fact that this happened in September, in the late stages of a pennant race, makes Quentin’s actions egregious. His aggressiveness wasn’t being used in a positive way. It was being used to express his anger publicly over not hitting a Lee pitch.
A hitter can’t afford to be reckless with his hands. And with this guy’s long history of injuries? Insanity.