After being pulled in the seventh inning of Friday's 3-1 loss to the St. Louis Cardinals, starting pitcher Kris Medlen chose to air his frustration for manager Fredi Gonzalez's move publicly, a distasteful move that is uncommon for members of the Atlanta Braves team.
He was quoted by MLB.com after the game.
" I got taken out with 78 pitches," Medlen said Friday night. "I was just starting to have to battle. I didn't have to battle yet. But I wasn't given the opportunity. I guess I'm voicing the fact that I didn't appreciate that. I don't know what kind of mentality we're trying to create for our starters. But I feel like I should be able to work out of some jams."
While Medlen may argue that he is a competitive person and the comments were emotionally charged, most would argue that every professional ballplayer should be competitive and should have the ability to control their comments to reporters. Criticizing your manager publicly is not acceptable in any situation.
The Braves are reeling, losing three of their last four and dealing with a host of recent injuries to leadoff man Jason Heyward and starter Brandon Beachy. They do not need any other setbacks or annoyances in the clubhouse, such as the one created by Medlen.
And Medlen has not been particularly sharp lately. Although he is 3-2 during the month of August, he has allowed twelve earned runs in twenty-nine innings pitched.
In fairness, Medlen did apologize to Gonzalez and neither man will comment on the incident any further. He elaborated briefly after the incident to Mark Bowman of MLB.com.
"Obviously I wanted to stay in the game. There is something wrong with you if you don't want to stay in the game, whatever the situation is. But I was in a situation where I didn't have much leeway."
Atlanta fans want Medlen to stay in the game too. Let's hope that all is well in Braves country so they can concentrate on healing and securing their spot in the playoffs.
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