Apr 9th 2008 11:29PM by Pat Lackey
Baseball fights are awesome. Baseball is basically the only sport that encourages every single man, woman, and child (err … hitters, fielders, and coaches … whatever) on the field to get involved in the brawls because no one ever throws punches and they’re generally just ridiculous affairs where swear words are yelled at each other. A batting practice fight, however, is a different story. You only go after someone during batting practice if you’re actually angry.
Apparently, Albert Pujols and Brandon Backe are actually angry with each other, because they got into what’s being described as “a quarrel” during batting practice before today’s Cardinals/Astros game. Backe explains:
“[I was] coming off the field and he approached me,” Backe said. “I don’t know. It’s apparent that we don’t like each other. That’s OK. There’s plenty of people I don’t like in this game. It doesn’t matter. It’s baseball. It’s the way it goes. The competition between he and I just escalated and it’s OK. It’s no big deal. This is what makes it fun.”
One thing that I know is that pissing off Albert Pujols tends to be a bad idea for most pitchers. Oliver Perez tried it once and was left with a 450-foot memory. Tonight? Albert and his sore elbow hit two bombs off of Dave Borkowski and Oscar Villareal, who are probably not terribly pleased that Backe got Pujols so fired up. Some people will never learn.