New York Mets left-handed pitcher Jason Vargas started — and answered questions — for the first time since being fined for an expletive-filled confrontation with a reporter, and said he doesn’t believe that “all the information” is out there.
Vargas had to be restrained from going after a Newsday beat writer in the Mets’ clubhouse following a loss on Sunday at Chicago’s Wrigley Field. He called it “an unfortunate distraction” on Monday.
On Wednesday, after the Mets’ 5-4 loss in 10 innings to the host Philadelphia Phillies, the 36-year-old hurler was asked for an explanation of the incident.
“It was an unfortunate confrontation,” said Vargas, who allowed two runs and struck out 10 in 6⅓ innings. “I don’t think all the information is really out there. I don’t think this is a time to get into that. But I think that anybody that knows me, anybody that has played with me, there’s never been a situation like that. So to think it happened out of the blue, it’s foolish.”
Vargas declined to explain what he meant.
“It’s over,” he said. “Our organization made a statement. We put an end to it. But I think it’s pretty obvious all the info isn’t out there.”
Mets manager Mickey Callaway also was fined for his involvement in the verbal confrontation. He apologized Monday.
Sunday’s incident followed a tense postgame news conference, during which reporters asked Callaway repeatedly about his decision to stick with reliever Seth Lugo during the eighth inning instead of going to closer Edwin Diaz. Lugo allowed a go-ahead three-run homer to the Chicago Cubs’ Javier Baez.
After the news conference, Callaway walked past the Newsday reporter, Tim Healey, and other reporters in the clubhouse. Healey said to Callaway, “See you tomorrow,” and Callaway responded by calling Healey a “m—–f—–.” Callaway walked away and then returned, cursing at Healey again and telling him to leave the clubhouse.
“I thought he was leaving for the day, so I said, ‘See you tomorrow, Mickey,'” Healey said. “And then he said, ‘Don’t be a smart-ass.'”
“I tried to tell him I didn’t mean anything by it,” Healey added. “I was just saying, ‘I’ll see you tomorrow.’ And then he said, ‘Get this guy out of here,’ and that got the attention of Jason Vargas.”
Vargas stared down Healey and shouted at him, including saying, “I’ll knock you the f— out, bro,” according to a Yahoo Sports account. Vargas eventually tried to move toward Healey but was held back by teammates, including Carlos Gomez and Noah Syndergaard.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
Credit: Source link