Towers, Gibson hope Upton can keep his cool

Aug 31, 2011, 2:40 AM | Updated: 4:03 am

PHOENIX – Arizona Diamondbacks star outfielder Justin Upton has been hit 15 times this season prompting people to wonder why doesn’t he charge the mound and send a message.

It’s not so easy when your team is in the middle of a pennant race and charging the mound would cost Upton a definite suspension by MLB.

“It’s a fine line. You can’t afford to lose players when you’re in a pennant race, but you have to protect your players,” said D-backs general manager Kevin Towers on Arizona Sports 620’s Doug and Wolf on Tuesday.

Towers admitted the team has retaliated at times this season with Arizona pitchers hitting other teams’ players after Upton has been plunked.

“You do what you have to do to protect your players. You try to use good judgment. Paybacks can be tough,” said Towers.

Manager Kirk Gibson is hoping Upton doesn’t let his temper get the best of him.

“We have a lot at stake. You have to keep that in mind sometimes when maybe you want to let your temper get the best of you and respond in a certain fashion,” said Gibson.

The D-backs manager can certainly understand his star player’s frustration though from being hit so many times this season.

“He doesn’t like it. If it keeps happening at some point, if it was me, I can’t guarantee what I would do,” said Gibson.

Times have changed in MLB from the days where players charging the mound was a common occurrence.

“In today’s game, it’s hard to remedy these things like maybe we should. I just hope that he doesn’t have an injury,” said Gibson.

If Upton is able to continue to put the team first by not retaliating during the pennant race, then it will speak volumes to how much he has matured as a player and leader on the team.


Comment guidelines: No name-calling, personal attacks, profanity, or insults. Please keep the conversation civil and help us moderate comments by reporting abuse.
comments powered by Disqus

Arizona Diamondbacks

Los Angeles Dodgers starting pitcher Clayton Kershaw throws to the plate during the first inning of...

Associated Press

Dodgers avoid sweep with win over Reds; D-backs remain atop NL West

Clayton Kershaw pitched seven scoreless innings and the Los Angeles Dodgers defeated the Cincinnati Reds 6-0 on Thursday afternoon.

1 day ago

Torey Lovullo...

Tyler Drake

D-backs’ series finale vs. Nationals postponed due to poor air quality

The D-backs' series finale against the Nationals on Thursday has been postponed due to poor air quality from fires in Canada.

1 day ago

Corbin Carroll #7 of the Arizona Diamondbacks celebrates scoring with teammate Gabriel Moreno #14 a...

Associated Press

Corbin Carroll racks up 4 hits, Diamondbacks beat Nationals

Corbin Carroll homered and the NL West-leading Arizona Diamondbacks defeated the Washington Nationals.

2 days ago

MLB games postponed, New York air...

Associated Press

Air quality in New York, Philly lead to sports game cancellations

MLB postponed games in New York and Philadelphia on Wednesday night because of poor air quality caused by smoke from Canadian wildfires.

2 days ago

Arizona Diamondbacks Lourdes Gurriel Jr....

Wills Rice

ESPN projects D-backs to have 1 MLB All-Star starter, 3 reserves

ESPN's staff gave their early 2023 National League All-Star predictions that featured four Arizona Diamondbacks players.

2 days ago

Arizona Diamondbacks' Josh Rojas is safe at second base as Washington Nationals shortstop CJ Abrams...

Associated Press

Diamondbacks rally against Nationals’ beleaguered bullpen in 10-5 win

The Arizona Diamondbacks rallied against Washington's beleaguered bullpen to beat the Nationals 10-5 on Tuesday night.

2 days ago

Towers, Gibson hope Upton can keep his cool