D-backs react to comments by Reynolds
DENVER — One day after first baseman Mark Reynolds called out his teammates for a lack of effort, the D-backs seemed to be a team with some internal turmoil.
D-backs manager A.J. Hinch left second baseman Felipe Lopez and center fielder Chris Young out of the starting lineup, but was not specific about whether he did it to send a message about a lack of effort.
When asked if anything should be read into who was in the lineup and who was not, Hinch said, “It’s your call.”
It sure seemed like Hinch was trying to send a message because while a manager generally will not say he is sending a message, if he is not he usually makes it pretty clear that he’s not.
Meanwhile in the clubhouse, Reynolds stuck behind his prior comments.
“I had cameras in my face nine minutes after the game and I was real mad about how we played, about a lot of stuff,” Reynolds said Saturday. “Stuff came out pretty hot, but everything that I said I felt needed to be said.”
What’s interesting is that Reynolds chose to share his feelings about his teammates to the media rather than address them during one of the many meetings the team has had where players have spoken or directly to the player or players he thought were responsible.
“When we have team meetings I don’t say anything,” Reynolds said. “I don’t have a lot of time in this game. I just haven’t felt like it was my place, but like I said I was pretty hot last night and when you’re upset and you have things on your mind and you have an outlet to say it, it just all boiled over.”
Count catcher Chris Snyder among those that was in agreement with Reynolds had to say.
“Everything that was said was dead on,” Snyder said. “I think there’s a lack of a lot of things. The main thing being heart. Guys around feel like they should be owed something, everything should be given to them, they don’t have to fight, they don’t have to compete. They just go out there, put a smile on their face on every first and 15th of the month and other than that it’s ho hum. Winning doesn’t matter as long as they get to the first and 15th they’ll be happy.
“You can’t play that way and expect to compete. We lack certain things, heart being one, at certain times brains and more times than not guts. Those are three things that are needed to win.”
Snyder, who is on the disabled list with a lower back problem, was asked if he had expressed that to his teammates.
“I’ve been quiet,” he said. “I’ve been real quiet because I’m at the point where I’m tired of saying. It’s time to do. You can say all you want. Right now I can’t do so I’m not going to say. There’s been enough saying.”
Young took the opposite approach and instead defended his teammates and by extension, himself.
“I care, the guys in the clubhouse care,” Young said. “We don’t like losing, we’re not accepting losing. It’s not something where we’re going out there, we’re not lacking effort. It may look like that if you watch the game, I’m in the outfield, I know what it looks like. It looks like guys aren’t giving effort, but that’s not the case.
“Everybody is busting it. Everybody wants to win. Nobody in our clubhouse is accepting losing, is taking the year and going through the motions. I don’t know how people are reacting to the comments Mark said or how the fans are taking it. I just want to make it clear that we’re busting our butts, nobody’s slacking. Guys want to win and guys care. Everyone is just trying to find their own way to make it happen.”
Ace Dan Haren was asked if he thought that effort was the issue.
“I don’t know if it’s a mental thing,” Haren said. “It’s hard for me to judge that. But like I said after starts I can look in the mirror and tell myself that I’ve given that effort and I hope that everyone else can.”
Listening to Young, though, it sounded like there was plenty of caring in the clubhouse.
“There’s plenty of guys in this clubhouse that don’t sleep at night because we don’t win ballgames,” Young said. “There are plenty guys who are [mad] when we have a sloppy inning. There’s plenty of guys who are angry when we lose consecutive games, when we don’t win a series. Our entire clubhouse cares.”
It’s hard to know where the D-backs go from here. Maybe Reynolds’ comments will prove to by a catalyst. It appears as though the meetings have not helped and the team has a worse record since the managerial change so that was not a cure all either.
“Who knows what the next step is,” Snyder asked before answering his own question. “Grow up, be a man.”