I read through the e-mails, surfed the Internets, listened to the radio on my way home from the ballpark last night and this morning on my way to the airport to fly to Atlanta. Most people seem to favor Charlie Manuel benching Jimmy Rollins for not hustling yesterday in a 5-0 victory over the Reds.
Some people don't. Those that don't say Rollins should have been afforded more rope.
Of course, a very important piece of information they seem to have overlooked is this: Rollins had been afforded more rope. He acknowledged that he had been warned about his hustle at least twice before.
"Three strikes, you're out," Rollins said.
In other words, Rollins understood. He had been afforded the benefit of the doubt a player like Rollins deserves. But then he crossed the line in Manuel's eyes, and Rollins couldn't be upset about that. Like Jim Salisbury wrote, it's easy to bench a role player like Eric Bruntlett or Greg Dobbs or Chris Coste. But it takes guts to bench the reigning National League MVP. Manuel showed yesterday this is his team. He chewed out his players before they got on this 12-4 run. He's called at least two players into his office twice this season, one of them being Shane Victorino.
He's called players into his office last season to set them straight, either for their play or for things they've said.
It's his show.