The dysfunction of the 2013 Angels season apparently has nothing on the 2012 season. Last year, when Anaheim finished 89-73 and third in the AL West, teammates Albert Pujols and Torii Hunter reportedly got into a fight in the Angels clubhouse after an altercation between Hunter and CJ Wilson. Here's an excerpt from Scott Miller's article over on CBS Sports.
Pujols called out Weaver for showing up a teammate the night before. Then he turned his attention on Hunter, blaming him for the dugout altercation with Wilson.
What Pujols did not know at the time was that Wilson and Hunter already had made amends, with the pitcher apologizing to the outfielder for overstepping his bounds in the dugout immediately following the game.
“Albert, you'd better get your facts straight,” a seething Hunter told Pujols.
Pujols said something back, and Hunter jumped him for being a bad teammate and pouting all season whenever he failed to get hits in a game, even in games the Angels won … and now he was going to call others out?
“Shut up, Torii,” Pujols snapped.
It was then that Hunter, from across the clubhouse, lost it and charged Pujols. Hawkins and outfielder Vernon Wells had to restrain him.
The meeting proceeded from there, and when it was over, tempers still heated, Hunter had to be physically held back a second time from going after Pujols, who is described as wanting no part of the fight.
Well, that certainly explains why the Angels let Hunter walk as a free agent this past winter and then signed Josh Hamilton for nearly as much money per year as Hunter got in total from the Tigers.
But while we're at it, can we go ahead and bury this idea that Hunter is an exceptional teammate? Between this fight, an incident in Minnesota years ago where Hunter punched Justin Morneau in the jaw, and his controversial comments about homosexuals last year, Hunter is doing a great job at tarnishing his squeaky clean image being spread about by many mainstream sportswriters.