Girardi critical of Guthrie's plunkings

Girardi critical of Guthrie's plunkings

BALTIMORE -- Pitching inside is part of Jeremy Guthrie's game, a critical component that has helped the Orioles right-hander put together a resurgent 2010 season. But Yankees manager Joe Girardi doesn't have to like it.

Following New York's 11-3 rout of Baltimore on Saturday night, Girardi spoke out about Guthrie's propensity for hit batsmen -- which includes 10 Yankees since July 28, 2008 -- his latest striking Derek Jeter's left elbow with the first pitch of the game.

"[There are] too many -- just too many," Girardi said of Guthrie's 13 hit batsmen, second in the Majors only to Yankees starter A.J. Burnett, who has hit 16 batters. "I don't really understand it. I know he likes to pitch inside, but it's too many. And that doesn't include the ones in Spring Training."

Guthrie plunked Mark Teixeira -- who missed several games as a result -- and Francisco Cervelli in Grapefruit League action, and Girardi also aired his frustrations this spring. When asked following Saturday's game if he thought Guthrie was purposely hitting Yankees, Girardi said he didn't know.

"You'll have to ask him," Girardi said. "My thought is it's way too many."

Neither Jeter nor Guthrie took offense to the first-pitch fastball that afforded Jeter first base, with the Yankees' captain calling Guthrie "effectively wild" and saying he took no offense to being hit. Following Jeter's plunking, neither bench was warned, and home-plate umpire Tony Randazzo didn't deem it necessary to speak to Guthrie, furthering the case that it was accidental.

"[I was] just trying to go inside," said Guthrie, who has made a conscious effort to be more aggressive this season. "Derek knows I am going to throw the ball in there all day long -- that's the way I approach it. So I guess it was a good indicator that when I tried to throw the pitches away later on in the game they went inside, and when I tried to throw that one inside it went way inside. So it's just a matter of not having great command [on Saturday night.]"

"I don't read anything into it at all," Jeter said of Guthrie's errant pitch and tendency to hit more Yankees batters than any other Major League squad.

"I haven't been counting," Jeter said. "I don't know why he would."