(CBS) Paul Konerko spent a lot of time hitting alongside Carlos Quentin when the outfielder was with the White Sox. And he had a front row seat to some of the history between Quentin and pitcher Zack Greinke when Greinke was with the Royals.
That’s a big reason why Konerko defended Quentin for charging the mound Thursday night after Greinke hit him with a pitch.
“I think like (Quentin) said, if you know the history and you know the pieces of the puzzle, it kind of all makes sense,” Konerko told the Chicago Tribune Friday. “So, you know, hopefully the people out there don’t look at, I think, as an isolated event like it was something that just happened last night.
“I think when you put all the pieces together, I think you find yourself you know being on Carlos’ side a little bit more when you start seeing, and it’s not just. I think it was three hit by pitches, but if you watch the games I’ve watched, he’s probably had more than five pitches that have gone over his head.
“So, you know, at some point, it’s going to be the last straw, and that’s what happened.”
Unfortunately, Greinke suffered a broken collarbone in the scrum after Quentin charged him, which has led to added criticism for the Padres outfielder. But Konerko was quick to point out that pitchers cause injuries all the time when they hit batters.
“If he lets one go up in there and it breaks Carlos’ hand, they would just say, ‘hey, that got away from him. That’s part of the game,'” Konerko said. “You know, throwing up in there time and time again and having somebody run out there and break your collarbone, that’s part of the game as well because again hitters get hit up in there a lot and that’s just coined as part of the game. At some point you have to put your foot down and that’s what you saw happen there.”