SEATTLE -- Tigers manager Jim Leyland is considered an old-school manager by many, but he considers Cole Hamels' move to hit Bryce Harper with a pitch anything but that. Leyland told Tigers play-by-play broadcaster Dan Dickerson on his regular pregame radio show that he would have suspended Hamels for at least 15 games.
Major League Baseball suspended Hamels for five games on Monday.
"I don't know the man," Leyland said of Hamels. "I know he's a very good pitcher, a very talented guy, but when you come out and admit [hitting Harper intentionally] like that -- that ball could have missed, hit him in the head or something else like that -- and you come out and admit that, I think five games is way too light, in my personal opinion. And I would expect that if that was my pitcher, if my pitcher went out and, almost in a braggadocious way, talked about hitting a guy and that, 'I did it on purpose.'
"I felt the way I read it, and I don't know if the kid meant it this way, but it was almost like a braggadocious thing. That's not enough. There's no way."
Leyland, who works with MLB on its Special Committee for On-Field Matters, continued:
"It upsets me because if you watch Major League Baseball, a lot of times one of your guys hits [a batter], one of their guys hits [a batter], the umpires are very quick to warn both benches about a situation like that," Leyland said, "and a lot of times there's nothing going on at all, but they just want to stop something before it starts. ... This is a great time ... to show that we mean business, and I think this suspension is way, way too light."
Leyland went on to say that the preemptive warning "becomes a joke. Let's tell it like it is."