In another little embarrassment to the Miami Marlins, hitting coach Tino Martinez resigned over the weekend after allegations of using heavy-handed tactics on players.
So what exactly did Martinez do? Well, he spoke last night to Fox Sports and said he just got a little too outraged when players refused to pick up balls.
Martinez allegedly grabbed rookie Derek Dietrich by the jersey during a batting practice after the second baseman refused to help pick up balls.
"I go, 'Derek, help us pick the balls up,'" Martinez recalled. "He goes, 'Why, I didn't hit 'em.' I said, 'I don't give a s--- if you didn't hit 'em, help us pick the balls up.' He walked toward me, not angrily, and said, 'Hey, I didn't hit the balls, why should I pick 'em up?'
"I grabbed his jersey and said, 'Because you're f------- part of this team, pick the f------ balls up right now. Pick the f------ balls up. I'm tired of your s---.' I probably pushed him backwards. That was it."
We Believe Local Journalism is Critical to the Life of a City
Engaging with our readers is essential to Miami New Times's mission. Make a financial contribution or sign up for a newsletter, and help us keep telling Miami's stories with no paywalls.
Support Our Journalism
Martinez admits that incident wasn't the first time he lost his temper over loose balls.
"One day I told Juan Pierre, 'One of these days, he's going to help us pick up the balls. He's a 27-year-old journeyman. You're a 15-year big leaguer. He will help us pick up the balls,'" Martinez recalled.
"So finally after about a month or so goes by, I decide I'm going to tell him something: 'Hey Chris [Valaika], help us pick up the balls.' And he goes, 'Why should I? I didn't hit 'em.' And I said, 'Pick up the balls, you're part of this team.' And he goes, 'But I didn't hit 'em.' So, I got in his face and I said, 'Pick up the f------ balls. You're part of this f------ team.' I got in his face and said it kind of angrily. And he picked up the balls."
Yes, apparently Martinez doesn't appreciate his players' failure to pick up balls. However, he probably should have been concentrating harder on his players hitting balls. Under Martinez's coaching, the Marlins have ranked last in all major hitting categories in the MLB so far this season.