The Toronto Blue Jays have a young and impressionable contingent of players at spring training and rightfully so, Ken Giles is ensuring nobody steps out of line.
The Blue Jays closer Ken Giles took it upon himself yesterday to police a pitchers infield drill when rookie David Paulino refused to partake. Giles lost it on the young pitcher in an explicit laced tirade questioning his motivation and desire to be on the team.
It appears Marcus Stroman finally separated the two, however, Paulino walked off the field alone. Interestingly enough, Stroman questioned the Jays lack of veteran clubhouse leadership earlier this spring. Well, I guess you got your answer, Marcus.
Kudos to Giles for policing the pitchers, here you have a rookie pitcher who couldn’t record an out the previous day before surrendering three runs and the following day he is refusing to do drills. Definitely not the type of message the Blue Jays need to be fostered around their young players.
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Hopefully, the Jays coaching staff pulled Paulino in for a closed door and explained that behaviour will be unacceptable moving forward. Paulino undoubtedly did not increase his chances of breaking camp with the team.
Giles is an intense individual and probably his own harshest critic, seeing he has punched himself in the face on a previous occasion following a poor outing. The closer is reportedly very happy in Toronto and obviously eager and ready to take on a leadership role.
Both players came from the Astros organization so they obviously know one another and perhaps there is history there or Giles has witnessed lackluster efforts in the past from Paulino, who knows. Regardless, he wasn’t having any of it yesterday and I for one am thankful.
The Blue Jays need some veteran voices in the room and it appears Ken Giles is now one of them.