Spring training typically isn't the time for bench-clearing brawls, especially between two teams with virtually no history with each other. But a nasty personal feud spilled over onto the field in Scottsdale, Ariz., on Sunday.
The Indians' Ubaldo Jimenez hit the Rockies' Troy Tulowitzki in the elbow with a pitch in the first inning, then gestured toward the plate. Jimenez said he was just trying to throw inside on him. The Rockies don't believe him, saying its bad blood left over from last season, when Tulowitzki and Carlos Gonzalez received huge contract extensions while Jimenez was traded. Tulowitzki also was critical of Jimenez in a recent column by Mark Kiszla of the Denver Post.
"He intentionally threw at him," said Rockies manager Jim Tracy, to MLB.com. "He should be suspended. I'm gong to be very disappointed if he doesn't." Tracy also called it "the most gutless act I've seen in 35 years in the game. I have lost all respect for Ubaldo."
Tulowitzki left the game with the elbow injury, though X-rays later showed no break.
Regardless, expect Jimenez to hear from the commissioner's office this week. He's supposed to start over the weekend in Cleveland, but fantasy owners of Jimenez should hold off on their lineups just yet.