Tigers reliever Al Alburquerque was clearly relieved after getting A’s outfielder to ground out on a come-backer to the mound ending the Oakland threat in the 9th inning on Sunday afternoon.
In fact Alburquerque was so relieved in that final out that he gave the ball a kiss, before under handing it to a waiting Prince Fielder at first base, something the late Jose Lima (a friend of Alburquerque’s ) use to do on some occasions.
The move though didn’t sit well with some A’s players, especially outfielder Josh Reddick whose team now faces an 0-2 deficit in the ALDS.
“I don’t know what his thought process was,” Reddick said. “It’s something that should be kept off the field in between the lines, and I don’t think it should happen.”
“I didn’t appreciate it.” Reddick continued “I thought that was immature. It was not very professional. That’s all I got to say about it.”
I wonder what the A’s feelings are about their own closer who acts like a total madman on the mound swearing and yelling at the opposition… Just a thought.
Either way Alburquerque insist though he didn’t mean anything by the action that all of a sudden has gotten plenty of recognition as he simply got caught up in the moment of a very important game.
“The emotion of the game,” Alburquerque explained. “I just tried to make my out. I feel so happy to get the guy out. That’s it. … I don’t know why I do that.”
Tigers starter Max Scherzer even maintained that the team isn’t trying to show anyone up, both teams are in the playoffs and respect goes both ways.
“We’re in the playoffs,” he said. “We’re not trying to show each other up. We respect them. They respect us.”
Well at the very least we’ve got a little story line to pay attention to as the series shifts to Oakland with the Tigers possessing a 2-0 lead.
h/t: Detroit Free Press, USA Today