Arizona Diamondbacks general manager Kevin Towers made waves earlier this week when he spoke openly about his disappointment in the team’s pitching staff for failing to protect D-backs’ batters who had been hit by a pitch.
Starting pitcher Brandon McCarthy was a guest host on Fox Sports 1’s ‘Crowd Goes Wild’ and got a chance to respond to Towers’ strong comments.
“I get the comments — they’re loud and they’re out there, but I understand the underlying point, we do need a personality shift, we do need to be tougher as a team,” McCarthy said. “I don’t think that necessarily means we need to go out and hit people, it’s not a head-hunting thing. It’s just simply that we have to change our mentality.
“We’re up against a $300 million behemoth (the Los Angeles Dodgers), and the only way you can compete with that is to try and find new ways to beat them, and for us is just going to be a personality and a clubhouse shift.”
McCarthy, who plunked five batters in 135 innings of work in 2013, explained to the rest of the panel (including Regis Philbin) that deliberately hitting batters is part of the game.
“Usually a couple a year,” he said. “Sometimes, (the order) comes down from the top and somebody tells you ‘we need to hit this guy for the sake of balancing things out.'”
McCarthy was also asked about the Dodgers’ Chase Field pool celebration after clinching the NL West title in Phoenix last month, but avoided any controversy with his answer.
“I’m fine with it,” he said. “Next year is what we need to focus on. It’s how do we stop them from swimming in our pool next year? How do we get to celebrate in our pool next year? We open with them in Australia — you focus on those games and let everything from last year just fall behind.”