All Rise! Nyjer Morgan vs. Washington Nationals

All Rise!  Judge Ensberg Presiding!

Judge Mo: You may be seated.  Florida Marlins, what seems to be the problem here?

Marlins: Your honor.  On September 1, 2010, Mr. Morgan charged the mound and a bench clearing brawl ensued.  We believe that this was uncalled for.

Judge: Ok.  Mr. Morgan?  Please tell me what happened.

Morgan: Judge Mo, it is really simple.  In the previous game I hit their catcher on a play at the plate and he got hurt.

Judge: Were you out?

Morgan: Yes.

Judge: Could you have slid?

Morgan: Yes.

Judge: OK.  Go on.

Morgan: The next game, I was hit on purpose and took my base.

Judge: Did you say anything or look at them in any way that would be considered aggressive?

Morgan: No your honor.  They were paying me back because I hurt their catcher.  I jogged down to 1st base.

Judge: Continue.

Morgan: After that I stole second base and then third base.

Judge: What was the inning and score?

Morgan: It was the 4th inning and the score was 14-3.

Judge: Then what happened?

Morgan: Later on in the game I Volstad threw a ball behind me.

Judge: He threw the ball behind you?  It wasn’t at you?

Morgan: No.  The ball missed me by a foot.  But I just dropped my bat and helmet and charged him.

Judge: Ok.  So the ball was thrown behind you and you charged the mound.  Did you hit Mr. Volstad?

Morgan: I did your honor.  I hit him with a left right in the face.  It was a good shot.  Right after I connected, I was clothes lined and tackled by the Marlins team.

Judge: Alright.  Marlins.  Why did Mr. Volstad throw behind Mr. Morgan?

Marlins: Your honor.  We feel like all of Mr. Morgan’s actions of hitting our catcher and then stealing bases led to another “beaning.”

Judge: Alright.  I think I have an understanding of what went on.  I will adjourn and ask the jury here at Morgan Ensberg’s Baseball IQ what they think.  They have really helped me so it is their turn to chime in.  Below is a poll.  I will submit my summary when 100 people vote.  Understood?  Good.

Bailiff: All RISE!

24 Comments on “All Rise! Nyjer Morgan vs. Washington Nationals”

  1. Robbie says:

    I think both parties are guilty here. There was on article on the SI website this morning about this whole incident. Maybe Morgan shouldn’t have charged the mound, but there was no reason for Volstad to throw at him a second time. It was still early in the game, and the Nationals were trailing, not leading. When your team is losing, and it is still early in a game, you do whatever you can to get back in the game. If the Marlins don’t want him stealing bases, stop him. You don’t throw at or behind a guy just because he stole a couple bases. He took his beaning, which was deserved, and took his base. Conflict over. Whatever happens after that is just a part of the game.

  2. Ber says:

    Shouldn’t there have been a 3rd option for both?

  3. Karen says:

    Okay, it’s not clear. The score was 14-3, but who was winning–Marlins or Nationals? If the Nationals were winning, then yes, the stolen bases were not necessary. But if the Marlins were winning, then I don’t see why Morgan couldn’t go ahead and steal the bases, since he’s trying to create runs. In any case, I don’t see why Morgan should charge the mound, so any suspension that occurs certainly is warranted.

    By the way–we seem to be lacking a bit of information here. Where was he hit the first time? (Yes, I know, I can go look this stuff up, but it would be nice to have all of the details here).

    P.S. I think in this case Judge Mo is “presiding,” not “residing.”

    • You are right Karen. I needed to give more information. The fact was that many people were emailing me about the incident so I just sat down and wrote it. I’ll be better.


  4. larry says:

    Unlike the Braden-Rodriguez case, in which no one was acting like a real ballplayer, all parties in this case were well within the guidelines of the unwritten rules. Though stealing second and third in a 14-3 ballgame is not generally acceptable, if you are thrown at twice, that unwritten rule may be suspended for the duration of your time on the basepaths because it becomes personal. All parties are acquited.

    Just dont swear at the fans on your way off the field. we pay you to have the best job in the world and that doesnt give us the right to swear at you. But still, you should never swear at the fans.

  5. Pedro says:

    The only thing Morgan did wrong on Wednesday was his chest-thumping walk to the dugout. Otherwise, he behaved fine. The Marlins–especially Helms and Volstad–are a bunch of babies because they don’t understand that there’s no unwritten rule that says a team down in runs can’t steal bases. Were the Nats supposed to just give up?

  6. bob says:

    The guilty party or parties are the managers, coaches, players, etc. of the Pirates and Nationals who never showed Nyjer how to play the game the right way. Maybe he can’t be taught–in that case, he’ll get passed around the league or out of it until he’s either done as a player or finally figures things out or learns to listen.

  7. teamlittleguy says:

    What Robbie said.

  8. mos says:

    I don’t care about the double-steal thing. If that’s why the Marlins threw behind him, then maybe they were being a little bit babyish. However, I think Morgan really needs to be thrown at more often, preferably at least once a game. The guy is the very definition of a loose cannon a-hole. His history reads like the recap of a train wreck in slow-motion.

  9. Marlins have always been punks who take things too far.
    Like the party they threw at Shea when they knocked the Mets out of contention in 2008.
    No class.

    Judge Mo – are you “residing” purposely?
    Not to be ‘that guy’ – but I think judges usually “preside” over cases.
    But I figure you may be ‘residing’ on purpose, so as to avoid impersonating a person of the court 😉

  10. Linda says:

    Nyger Morgan should be thrown out of baseball. This was not the first incident that he was involved in, on the wrong side. Throwing the baseball at heckling fans is uncalled for, and he deserved to be thrown out of MLB for that incident. When he charged Volstad I was thrilled to see him taken out, and at the bottom of the pile. The last thing we need is another Zambrano in baseball. Morgan continues to get away with his not good behavior because people around him are his enablers. All actions have consequences. Bad consequences follow bad actions due to bad judgement. It’t time MLB showed him the door, WITHOUT pay. There must be some morality clause that would keep the team from having to pay his salary if he is thrown out of baseball.

  11. lisa gray says:

    the marlins are guilty MUCH more than morgan.

    first, i took a look at the play from the day before when morgan ran into the marlins catcher – when he left second base and when he rounded third and headed for home, he had to make a split second decision – and IF he thought he was gonna be out AND the catcher was blocking the plate (BOTH true) then ML baseball rules (unwritten) say that running over the catcher is OK.

    just because it so happens that the throw was high doesn’t mean that the original decision wasn’t the correct one. and i sure don’t see the on deck guy telling morgan to slide, neither. and i’ll tell you this – IF the person running had been, say darin erstad or david eckstein, AND the ball had been knocked out of the catcher’s hand, then we would all be hearing about how “gritty” and “football-y” that was.

    so the marlins decide to throw at morgan anyhow – AND, not because of THEIR catcher, as they ALL said, well, it was a normal baseball play – but because they didn’t like him taking out a DIFFERNT team’s catcher. he takes his base like a good little boy, no fuss.

    but his team is DOWN by 11 runs in the 4th inning. not UP, DOWN. this is the major leagues, these are NOT little kids with a mercy rule. it is stupid to say that the team that is down should just lie down. the reason that usually when teams are down by 11 runs don’t steal is not because it hurts the widdle feewingth of the winning team, but because the losing team doesn’t want to risk an out – BIG DIFFERENCE. losing teams take extra bases all the time – and it is calle defensive indifference – so please don’t tell me that teams losing badly aren’t “allowed” to steal.

    now, should morgan have “taken his medicine” – meaning maybe, stood off first and allowed them to pick him off, and then cried all the way back to the dugout? and fact is that even the marlins admit they were throwing at him because of an incident with a DIFFERENT TEAM. so he’s not supposed to use one of the 2 GOOD baseball skills he has to help his team try to come back – meaning his ability to steal bases? you are kidding, right?

    and when a pitcher throws a FASTBALL behind a hitter, unless he OBVIOUSLY slipped or caught his spike or was somehow injured on the throw, it is always a serious purpose pitch, and hopefully meant to injure the player, like throwing a FB right at his head. this is NOT a curve that got away. nyjer was exactly right to charge the mound – and in fact, i think that the marlins set him up for this because gaby sanchez was waiting – and hit nyjer IN THE THROAT with his forearm – a banned move in every single contact sport at every level. morgan is a very small man for a baseball player – like 5-7, 160 – and the idea of his injuring or beating up the pitcher, who is a foot taller and 100 lbs heavier is just ludicrous.

    in fact, sanchez should have received a MUCH longer suspension for what he did – protecting the pitcher my butt – and if he had broken morgan’s neck with that little move, all yall would think that was just fine, right?

    this was a PERSONAL war conducted by the marlins and was more dirty than any on the field play that morgan has done.

    and interesting that every single baseball player with “behaviour” problems, labeled a “bad” guy just happens to not be caucasian, isn’t it?

    • KABOOOOOOMMMMM! Here Here! I agree completely!!!!!!!!!!!!! I’m am totally with you on every single point of this. I also think there is something to the “non-white” call.


  12. Liam says:

    Interesting and insightful analysis. Great stuff as always. I would tune in if you had your own TV show.

    I think Morgan deserved to wear one after his move against St. Louis (running into the catcher with no play at the plate. I bet the Cardinals are waiting for an opportunity to dot him.

    I also think that Morgan did deserve to wear it after the play at the plate. A “team guy” slides in that situation because he would score the go-ahead run (0-0 in the 10th). Looking at the video, I doubt the Marlins catcher could have applied a tag because the throw was high.

    After that, if he wants to steal bases, go ahead. Obviously for him it wasn’t a low-percentage play, which would generally prevent teams from running down by so many runs.

    However, I wonder whether the Marlins threw at (behind!) Morgan again not because he stole, but because of his slides. I’m all for playing the game hard, but I think his slides are reckless, with a nasty intent, much beyond a runner’s momentum taking them past the bag on a head-first slide.

    Didn’t he also get a suspension for throwing a ball at a fan?

    I don’t think Morgan’s intent in these instances was to “play hard.”

    My two cents.

    • Liam I think he was trying to make the best decision he could at the time. There isn’t much time to think out there and he didn’t do anything in the Marlins game to warrent a second “beaning.” The Marlins lost their cool and decided to be petty.


  13. Kyle says:

    I was at the game, and yes the Marlins were winning, but what they didnt say is when he stole the bases he came running into home and said something that I am not sure of to one of the Marlins fans. I think that is uncalled for, just because the fan “booed” him. I think Morgan is guilty!

    • Hey Kyle! I think it is great that you feel so strongly on this one. Unfortunately, the Marlins did not throw at him again because he said something to a fan. Ball players throw at players based on what happens on the field. But, I think your reasons for believing Morgan is guilty is cool with me. My opinion is simply opinion.


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