It’s officially a feud!
Detroit Tigers relief pitcher Joe Jimenez and Minnesota infielder Miguel Salo have been engaged in a war of words in the media, which according to Sano, has gone on since last season.
During last night’s game, Sano launched a home run off of Jimenez in the 7th inning, then stood to admire it. He then took a leisurely Sunday jog across the bases, pounding his chest in celebration upon crossing home plate.
Sano claimed in interviews that this goes back to last year, after Jimenez told him to “get the (bleep) out of here” after striking him out last season.
“It’s just crazy. I have no words,” Jimenez said last night. “I had big respect for him before yesterday. There’s no reason for (what he did).” He’s not supposed to get mad, you know? You pimped it, so get ready for the pimp, too.”
However, Jimenez was having none of it.
“That was a lie. I didn’t (make) it personal,” Jimenez said in response.
“I’m not going to be that guy to pimp a strikeout in a big situation to let them know I did it,” he continued. “I’m going to say this: I never, ever have done anything on the mound that affects the other hitter. I’ve never said something to a hitter. I’ve never got in a fight before in baseball.
“I’ve never said anything to anybody when I’m on the mound. I’m not that type of guy. I’m the guy that’s going to do my own thing. If I talk, it’s going to be to myself.”
Jimenez made it clear that he doesn’t mind a player flipping the bat following a home run or even stopping to watch it fly for a bit, but found Sano’s actions disrespectful – and issued a warning to him.
“He got the homer. He got the pitch. I hung a slider and he hit a homer. I deserved that,” Jimenez said. “But to do it like that and to say something like that to the press? That bothers me. I respect him. I respect all those guys in the other clubhouse. It just disappoints me.
“I’ve given up a lot of homers in the big leagues since I came up. I don’t care if you stand and pimp it or whatever. But don’t ever say something to me, because I never said something to you. If he would have pimped it without saying anything, it would have been cool. But he did it the wrong way.”
– – Quotes via Evan Woodbery of MLive Link – –