Hunter a standup guy

During my first year covering the White Sox for MLB.com, I watched Torii Hunter literally fling his body over the Metrodome fence on the dead run in left-center, taking away a game-tying home run from Carlos Lee. It seems like every play Hunter makes has an impact on the game?s ultimate outcome, and I can personally attest to the fact that many members of the White Sox organization would chip in for a beautiful stretch limousine for Hunter to leave town if he decided to exit the American League Central.

Hunter?s defense had a profound effect on the outcome of Wednesday?s game, but in this instance, it was on the negative side. The five-time Gold Glover dove for a Mark Kotsay line drive with two outs and the game tied in the seventh, turning what probably should have been a single or a double into a game-winning, inside-the-park home run.
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I always had a great deal of respect for Hunter, both as a player, a team leader and the little interaction I had with him as a person. I remember when he torpedoed White Sox catcher Jamie Burke at home plate two years ago, and I also remember listening to a number of people praising his aggressive play, including White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen, with Hunter gaining the benefit of the doubt, to some extent, because he was such a good person.

But I only wish his fans or just people who respect his ability could have heard Hunter respectfully answer all questions following his miscue in center. Even after he said that it was hard for him to explain the play unless you actually played center, he still continued answering questions from reporters and television crews alike.

I?m sure it?s not going to be the most pleasant flight the Twins have ever taken as they board their charter for Oakland, but history has proven this series is not quite over as of yet. Hunter has made mistakes before and he will make mistakes again, but physical errors never will outweigh a person?s class and dignity.

We all have made big mistakes in our life. They usually don?t take place in front of 55,000 people or on national television.

Scott Merkin

6 Comments

As a fellow athlete (in soccer) I know how easy it is too make a mistake, it happens! Anyone who loses respect for a player from one play, obviously doesn’t watch a lot of sports! (This is coming from a huge A’s fan by the way). It’s not always the mistake, but how you come back from that mistake the next time!
Megan

He is a great outfielder to say the least. You dont see guys creating postseason memories without effort. Torii showed great effort in that play. Like Mauer said, he took a chance, some pay off and some dont, this one didnt, it happends.
Tate

Now is the time to cheer on our Twins more than ever. DO NOT GIVE UP! Look what happend in 2004. Red Sox down 3-0 and came back to win the ALCS. We are playing Oakland, not the Yankees, and all we need is 3 wins, not 4. BELIEVE TWINS FANS!
Tate

Hunter did make a poor decision. I strongly believe that if this was a regular season game, he might have not made the same error. Nevertheless, noone should blame Hunter, because there were plenty of times when he has saved the Twins. Hunter has been consistently an offensive and defensive force on the team. And although there are lot new rising stars on the Twins team, its hard to find someone who stands out as much as Hunter in all those aspects. He trully is a great guy on the field and off. So noone should give him flack for this.

by the way, go A’s!!!

I believe that everyone is missing the mark with the Torii Hunter play yesterday. With the game tied and two outs in the late innings, the situation was perfect for Torii to attempt that particular play. If he lays up and plays it safe, the ball bounces in for a single and the A’s take a one run lead. So the ball got by him and they scored two runs instead of one. I say it was worth the risk. The game is played very differently depending on the score, inning, and number of outs. If it happened again tomorrow, I would hope that he would attempt the same play. In my opinion, to call the play a mistake or a poor decision is wrong.

Not so fast ritamarie. Two outs, runner on first, your pitcher has the lowest era of anyone in the American League this season – You let this one drop its first and second (third at worste). It wasn’t even close. I watched the Twins all season long and Torii never once did that. Sorry to say it but this is a contract year for Torii and on the national stage he was trying to get on the highlight reel. He went on a great run the end of the season and was asked if he would take some rest if the twins were to clinch the division early and he said, “No way. I need to put up some numbers. I need to build my resume.” If anyone saw his final plate appearences in the 162nd game of the season they could see that he was swinging for the fence trying to get those 2 extra RBI’s and get to 100. He has since taken responsibility to a point by facing the media but that play more than anyother will be the reason this Twins season ended early. I wonder if the extra attention on that play will help him with his next big contract.

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