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Buck Rips Jeter, Red Sox

J. Meric, Getty Images

The 2011 baseball season hasn’t even started yet and we’ve already got some great drama brewing.

In a recent magazine interview, Orioles manager Buck Showalter talked smack about Yankees shortstop Derek Jeter and Boston General Manager Theo Epstein.

And you know what?  Buck was right!

In an interview in the April edition of Men’s Journal, Showalter ripped the Yankee Captain:

“The first time we went to Yankee Stadium, I screamed at Derek Jeter from the dugout,” Showalter told the magazine. “Our guys are thinking, ‘Wow, he’s screaming at Derek Jeter.’ Well, he’s always jumping back from balls just off the plate. I know how many calls that team gets — and yes, he [ticks] me off.”

Leon Halip, Getty Images

Then, Showalter sarcastically gave Epstein credit for his two big offseason acquisitions (Carl Crawford and Adrian Gonzalez) – as if they had anything to do with Epstein’s G.M. skills:

“I’d like to see how smart Theo Epstein is with the Tampa Bay [Rays] payroll,” Showalter told Men’s Journal. “You got Carl Crawford ’cause you paid more than anyone else, and that’s what makes you smarter? That’s why I like whipping their butt. It’s great, knowing those guys with the $205 million payroll are saying, ‘How the hell are they beating us?’

What Buck said couldn’t have been more true. Jeter is a great player, but think about it; he loves to jump off the plate to get a ball called on an inside strike.  Jeter is a smart player for taking everything the umps give him, but an opposing manager doesn’t have to like it.

His comments just stated the facts and basically told the umps he wants the same calls for his team if they’re going to give those pitches to Jeter.

Theo Epstein isn’t a genius for outbidding everyone for a couple players – Buck is right again!  The Red Sox just outbid the competition for two great players – it didn’t take a rocket scientist to do that.  I can be the Red Sox or Yanks GM if I didn’t have a budget.

Buck is indirectly motivating his own team.  He’s talking to his team here – not the Yankees and the Red Sox.  I loved when Rex Ryan did it – and I like it here.  Showalter is trying to motivate his team and prove to them that they shouldn’t be afraid of the Red Sox or the Yankees.

What does he have to lose?  The Orioles aren’t a factor in the A.L. East and are virtually no threat to challenge Boston or New York right now.  Why not stir up the pot a bit?

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