Baseball is a frustrating game. Hitters get out more than they get on. As any Gatorade cooler or Louisville Slugger would tell you if they could talk, players don’t always react well to striking out.
Braves third baseman Chris Johnson pulled a fit last night so Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez pulled him.
“I play with a lot of passion every single pitch, every single at-bat,” Johnson told reporters after the game. “I hold with pretty high regard and then when things don’t go well, that’s kind of my downfall. That’s one of the biggest parts of my game that I’ve got to try to work on.”
The tantrum came in the tunnel after Johnson struck out in the bottom of the second. When the Braves took the field in the top of the third against the Rockies, Johnson wasn’t with them. Johnson, calling such outbursts “one of my demons,” apologized to his teammates, manager, and fans after the game:
It’s like getting tossed out of a game in the first inning. [Ramiro] Pena has to go in and get ambushed and the team doesn’t know what’s going on and I let my emotions get the best of me. First and foremost I wanted to talk to the team and let them know that I was deeply sorry for that and that I was going to work my butt off to fix that part of my game.
Johnson alluded to the possibility of hurting himself or a teammate during one of his outbursts, indicating the tantrum in the tunnel may have been quite violent and chaotic. The National League’s second-place finisher for last year’s batting title called his behavior “dangerous.”
The Braves won the game 3-2 on a run scored by Johnson replacement Ramiro Pena.