Atlanta Braves fans weren't exactly the biggest supports of Melky Cabrera during his stint with the club in 2010, and it seems the San Francisco Giants left fielder didn't make himself anymore friends during the three-game series that concluded Thursday in his first trip back to Atlanta since being released at the end of his only year with the Braves.
Cabrera irritated pretty much anyone associated with the Braves when he gestured toward the crowd after homering in the sixth inning of Wednesday's ballgame, a loss for the Braves. Even after being brushed back in the eight, he gestured again when Gregor Blanco, also a former Braves, hit a home run in the 11th. He also taunted Jason Heyward to try to move from second to third on a flyball in the bottom of the eighth.
The All-Star Game MVP was also seen doing with teammates what has been dubbed the "crotch chop," garnering harsh words from Chipper Jones.
"That's Melky, and that's why he is not here anymore," Jones said Wednesday. "He got a little happy when I think Blanco hit the home run. It won't be forgotten."
Interestingly enough, Tim Hudson, the man on the pitching staff most likely to put one in someone's numbers, did not bean Cabrera in the series finale Thursday. Instead, Cabrera tripled and raised in his hands afterward in the eighth. He was booed when he slowly trotted home on a sacrifice fly by Buster Posey.
"We won the game; that's all that matters," Hudson said. "Whenever they want to strut around when they lose, that's fine. That's their own thing."
Cabrera, however, didn't see what the big deal was.
"I just try to play hard baseball," Cabrera said through an interpreter. "Sometimes when the adrenaline is really high, things might happen. But I'm not trying to embarrass anybody. I'm just trying to play hard and be competitive."
Blanco was with Cabrera, though he may not have seen the reported incident when Cabrera made his gesture toward the crowd by himself.
“I don’t know why they think that. They misunderstood what we were trying to do," Blanco said. "It’s a misunderstanding. They took it another way. We’ll keep doing it. It’s just like a handshake. It makes the game fun.”
While 20 pounds heavier, Cabrera hit .255 with four homers and a .671 OPS for the Braves in 2010.
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