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Just The Sports: Scott Proctor Foiled

Just The Sports

Sunday, June 03, 2007

Scott Proctor Foiled

Major League Baseball foiled New York Yankees reliever Scott Proctor's attempt to acquire some rest for his overworked right arm by refusing to suspend him despite the fact he came close to hitting Boston Red Sock Kevin Youkilis in the head this past Friday. Proctor was suspended for four games earlier this season for throwing at Seattle Mariner Yuniesky Betancourt after both teams were warned by the umpires so he naturally assumed that a repeat beaning incident would garner him even more of a vacation.

After being asked by reporters about not receiving a multiple-game suspension for throwing at Youkilis, Proctor, who has pitched in more than half of the Yankees' games even with the four-game suspension, responded in both a disappointed and disheartened fashion. "I thought for sure I'd get at least another four games, even though I was hoping for a little bit more rest than that," Proctor said. "But nothing. I've tried everything I could think of to convince [manager] Joe [Torre] that I won't be effective if he continues to trot me out there every day: failed to record an out twice, blew three saves, walked just two fewer batters than I've struck out, and possessed the second-lowest win probability added of all the Yankees relievers. Still, he won't let me take a few days off. What else was I supposed to do?"

Proctor added: "You'd try to get yourself suspended, too, if you had a manager as incompetent at managing the bullpen as Joe Torre."

Yankees manager Joe Torre was visibly relieved when the news came down that Proctor would not receieve any punishment for throwing at Youkilis. "I don't know what I would have done if Scott had been suspended," Torre stated. "He pitched a few good innings for me last year and ever since then I knew I could depend on him whenever I needed a reliever, even if he had pitched the previous two days and given up a few runs. Once you have the kind of security blanket Proctor has become for me, nothing else matters. I doubt anything will ever be able to convince me to give him any significant rest."

Asked why he never used Brian Bruney or Sean Henn or Mariano Rivera as often as he did Scott Proctor, Joe responded by asking, "I can do that? You mean you can use your whole bullpen evenly like that? Sounds dangerous to me."

Bob Watson, MLB's vice-president of on-field operations, was the one who informed the Yankees that Scott Proctor would not be suspended and revealed what MLB took into account when deciding what to do with Scott Proctor. "We at MLB were fully apprised of what Proctor was really intending to do by throwing at Youkilis' head," Watson stated. "It is no secret around baseball that Proctor is in extreme need of rest and is willing to go to any length to acquire it for himself. So when we were debating on how best to punish him, we realized the worst fate for Proctor was to leave him in the hands of Torre, who no doubt would try his best to overwork Proctor and ruin his pitching statistics for the year. And that is why we didn't suspend him."

Although he was not suspended this time, Proctor vowed nothing would keep him from attempting to obtain some sort of rest for his weary arm, even if he had to resort to marrying the disabled list like Carl Pavano.



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