(Courtesy of the AP)
The buzz immediately after the Ryan Dempster-Alex Rodriguez incident last night was about retaliation. Whether you liked that A-Rod got plunked or not, there was no denying that Dempster was way out of line in how he went about dishing his version of justice. Joe Girardi justifiably lost his mind on Brian O'Nora when the warnings were issued without an ejection of Dempster and everybody knew somebody on Boston was getting plunked. The ESPN cameras actually caught Joe saying it to whoever the third base ump was as he left the field. It was just a matter of who, when, and what the end result of that was going to be.
Funny thing, the revenge never came. In a close game at the time, CC Sabathia decided it was best left to another day, probably a sound decision on his part strategically. With the way he was pitching, he couldn't afford to give the Sawx more free baserunners. The bullpen guys all had close leads to protect bridging the game to the 9th, and obviously Mariano Rivera was not going to be the one to buzz anyone's tower (although that would have been beyond awesome).
Add the 3 HBPs Yankee hitters took after the A-Rod plunking, each of which brought no ejection with it despite the warnings in the 2nd inning, and the Yankees find themselves with a score to settle. They had their chance to even things up taken away from them last night, and it'll be a little over 2 weeks until they get another chance (at the series I'm going home to see!!!). That chance will come on Thursday night, September 5th at The Stadium, with Ivan Nova on the mound assuming the current rotation order holds. He's got a big fastball and has been known to be the fiery type on the mound from time to time. Regardless of how they feel about him personally, the rest of the Yankees certainly looked upset at what Dempster did and how O'Nora called it. Baseball code should and in all likelihood will overrule personal feelings about A-Rod in this instance.
Last night brought a little heat back to the Yanks-Sawx rivalry that's cooled down in recent years. Things will be left to simmer for the next few weeks and all eyes will be on the Yankee starter in the top of the 1st the next time these 2 teams hook up.