Upton and Longo Fought like true Brothers

 

Come on people, families fight. Can you honestly tell me that you do not fight, even as adults with your siblings when you get together about the little things, or if something annoys you? Honestly can you really play that naïve that your family situation is always crystal clear with no down moments or frustrating elements. If so, then you are definitely a made-for-Television family drama in the making. That is why the recent B J Upton/Evan Longoria dust-up really doesn’t get me all up in a lather here.


The Tampa Bay Rays have portrayed their clubhouse as a bit of a family unit in recent years. A bit of a fraternity of brotherhood which each members having their own good and bad elements that play out during the season. With that in mind, a family can argue and tussle and all is forgotten within minutes. Then why again is this recent argument so vital to the Rays? First off, it clears the emotional air and puts the game back into prospective for all involved. The disagreement came after a costly mistake that netted the winning run, but was not the cause of the loss.

You have to ask yourself, if Upton’s long drive would have been to the left 3 feet and gone out for the Walk-off victory, would this display ever have happened? Would Evan and B J hugged it out on the field after he crossed Home Plate, or would it never have surfaced at all? Common sense tells you it was a heat of the moment event, and one that Longoria needed to get off his chest. Because of the closeness of Upton and Longoria, the event might have been amped up a bit, but the true emotions and actions and reactions show that this was not staged or contrived in any possible way.

Sometimes emotions get the better of you in situations. But just like a family, Longoria admitted after the scuffle that it was already behind him and Upton and it was not a major issue. It was a heated discussion out in the open with no recourses or retaliation by either party. It was like brothers fighting over the same girl (Lady Luck),or maybe wearing each other’s clothes.. Why is it more and more that Sly and the Family Stone song “It’s a Family Affair” seems to stick in my mind in regard to this Rays club? They do not have the outward personalities of that 1970′s Pittsburgh Pirate teams that came to symbolize the team as a family extensional unit, but the song always rings in my mind when this team wins and loses.
 
I have a slightly younger sister, and we fought about the weirdest things in the past, and pull off a few good fights even today. But the biggest part of being a family unit, or a collectively united team is to know each others weaknesses and strengths and play to both of them to produce harmony and some sense of peace. Worst part of all of this is that it was done in front of the television camera, so the media will spark it into internal fighting amongst the Rays and keep driving this home until it sickens us all. Since Longo is considered the “franchise guy”. I would not be surprised or amazed if people ask for and expect a change to be made within the near future.

Did Upton really do some that was so wrong? Upton is used to working with All-Star Carl Crawford in Leftfield, and might have made an error in judgment to expect Matt Joyce to get to that ball before him. Upton made a critical mistake by going into a trailing role during the play assuming that Joyce was racing for the ball. That kind of mistake does happen when you are beginning to work with another outfielder. That same moment was bound to happen sometime, it just materialized at the wrong time for either Upton or Joyce to hold D-Back hitter Rusty Ryal’s to a double. Families seem to forgive mistakes, the media does not.

And that is the jest of this post today. I found it quite amusing that this visual confrontation lasted for days in the papers and on the Internet, but was over within minutes between Longoria and Upton.. Frustrations have been mounting ever since each player has seen his own batting averages take a tumble. We forget that Longoria finally snapped out of a recent slump where he went 4-31 (.129) and some of that anger and frustration still linger within him. Upton has been a blessing at the lead-off spot for the team hitting .320 in the top spot, but .220 anywhere else in the Rays lineup.
 
Collectively the Rays tea kettle has been steaming for quite a bit, and this same situation could have erupted between any other pairing on the team. But the good part is that this one will not leave a bitter taste in either player’s mouths. Upton and Longoria each accept what the other has said and the issue is gone, gone, gone.

And who knows, if Longoria had attended the Rays Season Ticket holder party on Sunday night ,maybe Upton and Longo would have signed autographs back-to-back as the issue was over and done with. But then again, that is what you do as a family. You fight, argue, and make your point, then you forgive, forget and again bond back into that protective family unit…..Or that is at least what the Brady Bunch did.

4 Comments

That reminds me why I like Longoria so much. He’s a leader.
-Sun-Ui
http://gameaboveall.mlblogs.com/

Sun-Ui.
Not sure Longo is a true leader in that clubhouse yet, but he is well in his way to establishing his MLB legacy.
The Upyon situation was a feud between friends. It did not have the passion or skill of rallying his team, but that comes with experience. And having Carlos Pena as an example of that leadership will be istrumental to his future leadership stature on the Rays…or elsewhere.

Rays Renegade

http://raysrenegade.mlblogs.com

That dude was clearly jogging. Good for Longoria for calling him out.

Kaiser,
I agree with you it was not a 100% effort, but disagree that it needed to be Longo to get in his face like that.
He could of said it from a different angle than right in his face, which prompted the dugout showdown.
You can go up to some one,sit next to them and ask if they hustled without causing a meltdown within eyesight of the cameras.
That is what a true leader does….He doesn’t draw attention to his motives or talks but leads besides the player, not in front of him yelling.

Rays Renegade

http://raysrenegade.mlblogs.com

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