Yankees, Red Sox trade barbs

Updated: June 12, 2009, 9:45 PM ET
By Andrew Marchand | ESPN.com

The New York Yankees and the Boston Red Sox don't play again until August, but they continue to spar off the field.

A baseball official told 1050 ESPN Radio in New York that the Yankees called the commissioner's office Friday to ask that Brad Penny be suspended for hitting Alex Rodriguez in the back during the first inning of Thursday night's Red Sox win.

"Penny's control was pretty good," Girardi said. "I thought it was on purpose. That is all part of baseball."

Yankees pitchers have hit Red Sox players nine times this season. Rodriguez was the third Yankee to be plunked. After Rodriguez was hit, the teams were warned and there were no further incidents. The Red Sox are 8-0 against the Yankees this year. The teams don't meet again until Aug. 6 at Yankee Stadium.

In the meantime, Red Sox owner John Henry used his Twitter account to ask if the Yankees are cursed by Mark Teixeira. This offseason, Teixeira spurned Boston for the Yankees' eight-year, $180 million deal.

"How old is Mr. Henry?" Teixeira asked of Henry, who is 59. "There is no reason for me to get into any war of words with some 70-something-year-old man. It doesn't make sense." The Teixeira-Red Sox discord dates back to 1998 when Teixeira declined to sign with Boston out of high school. It continued this offseason when the Red Sox appeared to be the favorites to sign him before the Yankees swooped in.

After the latest Red Sox win over the Yankees, Henry wrote on his Twitter account, "the MT Curse?"

In an e-mail to 1050 ESPN New York, Henry said of Mark Teixeira's response to his curse Tweet, "I thought it was very thoughtful."

Henry added, "But seriously that's all theatre. He is certainly one of the best players in the game. Tremendous hitter, great first baseman. A great sign for the Yankees. And he has a great sense of humor."

Teixeira did not seem amused by the implication.

"Everybody knows the Yankees paid the most," Teixeira said. "This is a business. It was a family decision and a business decision. They can have their opinions -- that's fine. I made the best decision for me, and it's worked out great."

Teixeira entered Friday night's game with the Mets hitting .289 with 19 homers and 52 RBIs. Teixeira couldn't comprehend why Henry decided to take a shot at him and described the idea of a curse as "silly."

"You guys make that decision," Teixeira said when describing his actions compared to Henry's. "Whose reputation looks better?

"I met with 12 teams. If 11 owners want to take shots at me, that's fine."

As for Penny hitting A-Rod, the Yankees feel as if there should be discipline. A.J. Burnett is appealing his suspension for throwing over the head of Texas' Nelson Cruz. Though there was no previous warning and Burnett remained in the game, he received a six-game suspension.

"It seems like there is always the feeling that if someone intentionally throws at someone they are going to be suspended," Girardi said. "I don't care for it. I don't care for hitting him in that situation. That's my opinion. I'm not 100 percent right, for sure, that he threw at him on purpose. That's my feeling. That's up to the commissioner's office."

Andrew Marchand is the managing editor of 1050 ESPN Radio in New York.

Andrew Marchand is a senior writer for ESPNNewYork. He also regularly contributes to SportsCenter, Baseball Tonight, ESPNews, ESPN New York 98.7 FM and ESPN Radio. He joined ESPN in 2007 after nine years at the New York Post. Follow Andrew on Twitter »