Minnesota Twins: The Ballad of Torii Hunter’s Strikeout

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Maybe it was the emotions flowing due to a not all-that-great homecoming in a homecoming for Torii Hunter. Hunter, of course, used to be a young stud for the Minnesota Twins, eventually ended up with the Detroit Tigers and on Monday the two faced off with Hunter being back in his original threads with the word ‘Minnesota’ across the chest.

Hunter didn’t have a good game. The right fielder saw the most pitches of any Twins batter, but he and left fielder Oswaldo Arcia led the team in strikeouts with two. They both are on pace for 324 strikeouts on the year.

The last strikeout ended the game. Hunter was facing former teammate Joe Nathan who came in to relieve a fantastic performance from David Price. Minnesota had a couple on and a couple out when the matchup was set and Nathan got the best of his teammate, but it wasn’t without controversy.

Home plate umpire Joe West called Hunter out on a check swing. Video replay shows that Hunter didn’t go, but West did not see it that way. He didn’t even ask for help from the first base umpire. Hunter was not happy about this.

Hunter dropped his bat and argued with West, but the game was over. Well over. The Twins were down 4-0 and Hunter just looked like a fool.

West doesn’t need to give an explanation. It was a horrible call, but Joe West owes you nothing. Until robots take over all aspects of umpiring the game of baseball, this will be part of baseball. It’s just how it is.

Hunter is a grown man. He is an emotional man, but that doesn’t mean you get to yell at the umpire. It looks classless. Why even start something about a call that probably wouldn’t have affected the outcome of the game? There are 161 more of these.

It’s not a big deal, but it’s not the way to start a season. Win with grace and lose with grace.

Maybe that can be in the memo line of the check Hunter has to cut for the fine he just got himself.

Welcome home, Torii.

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