Jason Kendall--Grizzled Old Catcher Stereotype and Hotheaded Putz (Not to be Confused with Mariners Reliever J.J. Putz)
Evidently, Oakland A's catcher Jason Kendall is mighty upset at Major League Baseball for dropping his appeal of a four game suspension, which he received for charging at--and subsequently swinging punches at--Angels pitcher John Lackey. Kendall's reaction came after Lackey threw a pitch that nearly hit Kendall and then shouted a snide comment about Kendall's huge elobow pad.
Kendall responded to the denied appeal today. And the further he went on about the issue, the more he sounded like an aggressive clown incapable of seeing these matters at all objectively.
"Major League Baseball has turned into a badminton league. They told me I didn't have any shot of getting my suspension knocked out," Kendall said.
First of all, this comment is hilarious.
DATELINE: NEWPORT NEWS, RI--Professional shuttlecocker Jason Kendall was suspended by the National Badminton League for inappropriate conduct in a match on May 2. Kendall, upset after opponent John Lackey called him "uncouth bourgeoisie," fired the shuttlecock toward Lackey. After the toss fluttered to the ground several feet short of Lackey, Kendall followed his act of frustration by pummeling Lackey with repeated punches to the face and torso.
Then Kendall says this:
"The fact that they won't knock anything off is embarrassing to the game because the game has changed. Now you can't really defend yourself. I understand I have to be suspended, but it's not like I went out and picked a fight. Nothing would have happened if he wouldn't have said anything to me, if he wouldn't have taken three steps hard at me."
Now maybe I shouldn't judge because I don't know exactly what Lackey said. Maybe it was the most awful, horrible, incendiary elbow pad-related utterance in the history of human existence, but I don't exactly see how Kendall was defending himself. "Three hard steps"? Even if John Lackey has a ten-foot stride--which is impossible unless Lackey is 20 feet tall--he would still have been more than half of his original distance to Kendall and would only pose a threat if he had 30-foot arms (also impossible).
"I get called out by Lackey. He calls me out and disrespects me and I'm supposed to sit here and have him yell at me? So basically what Major League Baseball is saying is that any big league pitcher out there can yell at somebody and get fined $2,000. That's what the fine was," Kendall said.
God forbid someone should yell at him. In fact, I know I would be right pissed if I were fined two G's for merely yelling at someone fifty feet away from me.
And after ducking the pitch, I'm sure you didn't glare violently at Lackey to provoke the whole matter, right Jason?
"I think the big thing was this was my fourth time, and all four of the fights I've been into has been about sticking up for myself or sticking up for my pitcher. I guess they don't look at that," Kendall said. "People that are making decisions have never been in a situation like that. They wait for situations like this to happen so they can have this big power. And that's what they did. They have the power right now."
Oh, so it's nothing but a power trip...Riiiight. I see; his four fights--in which he was apparently always acting in the right--indicate unfair targeting by other players and the league office and not an aggressive, irrational temperment. And I'm sure the league brass sit around thinking, "I hope we one of our players instigates a violent melee today, so I can relish in my Big Power and excercise my Big Power muscles and suspension-writing pen."
The 31-year-old Kendall, who played 150 games last year in his first season with the A's, entered Friday's game batting .244 with no home runs and seven RBI.
Oh that's right; he also stinks.