Burns: A one-time mistake
Justin Upton isn’t the first player to trot to first while admiring a would be homer and he won’t be the last. But it better be the last time he ever does it, that’s for certain.
And had AJ Hinch not sat Justin’s butt on the bench for loafing it, Rockies pitchers might have been justified in buzzing Upton’s tower.
Upton acted like a little leaguer yesterday and Hinch rightfully treated him like one, benching him in the bottom of the third for what should have been a double in the top half of the inning. But Upton thought he got all of it, he stood, jogged, watched…..while the ball bounced off the fence. Run hard all the way and you’re at second kid. But in a season where you’re 15 games under .500 and in a series where you’re getting worked by the team in the NL west that actually responded to their mid-season managerial change, you just watched. If one of the 12-year-olds on my son’s club team did that, their coach would make them run ’till their legs fell off. But it’s not like it’s the first time with Upton.
His level of interest in playing defense wanes. His slow walk back to the dugout after a strikeout borders on irritating. His youth and his talent are undeniable but neither can be used as justification for the way he plays sometimes.
This organization has given Upton a lot of wiggle room over the years. So it was refreshing to see Hinch jerk the chain and remind his right fielder that his behavior was “intolerable”.
Let’s see if the “future” of the D-backs can learn from the present. He’ll keep making mistakes, shoot, he just made one in Monday’s game, straying too far off the first base bag as part of a double play.
But the mistake of standing, watching and admiring…..a single? After getting embarrassed yesterday it’s a mistake he should never, ever make again.
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