The next time the Nats are in Cincinnati, one of their pitchers better sleep with one eye open, wear a flak jacket in the streets, and avoid all dark alleys. Reds infielder Brandon Phillips is ticked off, and he's looking for revenge, reports the Cinci Enquirer.
Way back on Aug. 15, Nats rookie pitcher JD Martin threw against the Reds. The Nats battered the opposing starter Johnny Cueto, knocking him out early, jumping out to a huge lead.
In the sixth inning, leading 10-1, Brandon Phillips led off, and Martin plunked him on an 0-1 count. The pitch gave Phillips a hairline fracture in his left wrist, which he hopes to play through for the rest of the season.
Phillips, to say the least, isn't happy.
"He came up and in and I still think he did it on purpose, but it’s all good. We don’t play them again (this year) but I’m gonna face him again. I mean I’m not trying to fight, I’m just trying to get him back for hitting me."
Pistols at dawn, perhaps?
If you think this is run-of-the-mill athlete ramblings, Brandon takes it a step further, making it seem as if JD's name is on the tip of his tongue at all times:
"You can look at my hat and his name is in there. I write names in my hat and remember who I need to get … Not fighting or nothing, but getting back at that dude. You give some hard look at ‘em, let ‘em know, let ‘em see your name."
A grudge list in his sweat band? Charming. Does he take his Sharpie out and X through the names when he disposes of his enemies one by one?
But if he's telling the truth, his manner of disposal is a stare? Look out, JD, Brandon is giving you the eye. But don't worry. He's not going to fight; he'll just look at you for a bit.
That should have JD piddling in his pants.
It's not quite a blood feud, but the idea of someone picking on JD Martin -- a crappy pitcher on a crappy team -- is certainly odd.
What the team needs is for some intermediary to step in to resolve this conflict -- someone with ties to the Reds and to the Nats; Jim Bowden, where have you gone? This is your hour to shine.