Reporting Matt Loede
CINCINNATI (92.3 The Fan) - Derek Lowe opened up a wound on Wednesday night, and Thursday it was Reds manager Dusty Baker’s turn to fire back.
Lowe had strong words for Baker Wednesday after a feud that dates back four years when he was with the Dodgers. Lowe went so far as to say he has no respect for Baker, and to ask him about the feud.
Thursday, the media in Cincinnati did, and Baker wasn’t shy about talking about Lowe for what he said.
“He had words for me, it’s really something I didn’t want to make public,” Baker said. “He’s the one that brought it up. He had some really choice words for me, I don’t care if he respects me or not, I don’t really care what he says, doesn’t matter.”
Lowe claimed Wendesday that Baker would deny all that has gone on between them, but clearly Baker must have felt that Lowe let the cat out the bag, and Baker seemed more than happy Thursday to go with it.
“Number one you gotta ask him why he hit Joey Votto in the back two years ago,” Baker said. “Yesterday he took exception to a ball that was inside that didn’t hit him. Then hit Brandon Phillips later after that.”
Lowe did hit Phillips in Wednesday’s game that loaded the bases. The Tribe thrower seemed to be upset being brushed back by Reds starter Mat Latos with a 96-MPH fastball to start the fifth inning.
Baker is right in saying that Latos didn’t hit Lowe, but he wasn’t too happy about being brushed back.
“To say it didn’t come from Dusty, Mat Latos has been with the San Diego Padres the last four years, he has no idea what’s going on,” Lowe said Wednesday night. “Again, you can ask him (Baker), he’ll say he doesn’t know (expletive) about it, like he always does.”
Baker said Thursday that he is not in denial of going after Lowe on Wednesday night, and said he did give some orders to Latos before the 5th inning at-bat.
“I’m not denying nothing,” Baker said. “Didn’t tell anybody to hit him, but to buzz him and make him uncomfortable, that’s what happened. Nobody hit him, but then he came back and hit our guy.”
Lowe said that there was an “incident” between he and Baker, and Thursday Baker didn’t back down from that statement, but seemed more to put the blame on Lowe than himself.
“What he was talking about was something that he said and did a few years ago, you gotta ask him what that was,” Baker said. “He got a lot of people involved in the situation that didn’t need to be involved in the situation. Since he made it public you go ask him what he did.
“Since he’s such a big man that wants to run his mouth, let him run his mouth about himself.”
One question that was asked to Baker was about the comments Lowe made about not having respect for the Reds skipper. Baker seemed to not care too much that Lowe doesn’t like him, and the feelings appear mutual.
“He don’t respect himself,” Baker said. “Word was whatever he did or said there was probably a good chance that he was drinking at the ballpark at the time three or four years ago so he don’t remember what he said, or what he did.”
There was also an incident in Wednesday’s game where Baker shook his finger at Lowe after the brush back pitch by Latos. Lowe said Baker was shaking his finger in denial he was involved – Thursday the manager said that wasn’t the case.
“When he said I shook my finger at him to say I had nothing to do with it, (former NBA star Dimbeke) Mutombo didn’t shake his finger to say I didn’t have nothing to do with it, that means don’t mess with me or my team,” Baker said.
Reds pitcher Mat Latos did comment on Lowe, stating he could have hit him. “He can whine about it, if he wants to whine. If I wanted to hit him, I would have hit him. Flat out,” Latos said.
Thursday Lowe sat with Indians manager Manny Acta for about 20 minutes before declining to comment to the media awaiting him at his locker.
Acta said to reporters that he didn’t want to get involved in the situation, and that he wasn’t aware of the “incident” between Lowe and Baker.
“My thoughts are that I am not into gossiping,” Acta said. “This is my first time managing Derek and I am not aware of anything going on. All I can do is stand by my team.”