Earlier this weekend, I posted about the reasoning behind why Tanner Scheppers wasn't available to pitch in the 11-8 loss in Cleveland on Friday night. The story went that Scheppers was out getting food late Thursday night and was attacked by "several young males", and Scheppers claimed that he didn't file a police report because they told him this kind of thing happened all the time.
For his part, it appears Scheppers wasn't totally lying, but he wasn't exactly truthful either. You see, bar fights do happen all the time, and it appears that's exactly what happened, rather than the claim that he was "suckerpunched".
According to a witness that spoke with Clevescene.com, "He lost a bar fight. He had 10 chances to walk away before this happened."
As the story goes, it appears Scheppers was the instigator. For the Rangers, the story gets worse. First, it was 2:30 AM. Second, he was accompanied by Joe Nathan, A.J. Pierzynski, and according to the witness, a bunch of girls.
In and of itself, the scenario isn't 100% troubling. For the part of the story we do know so far, it could be that Scheppers really was at the bar/restaurant to get food. Many will point to the incident as just another problem causing the Rangers to lose. What's more troubling, to me at least, is the fight itself.
First, while it's not clear whether or not Scheppers was backed up by his teammates, neither of them ended up in the news over it. It might partially explain the hesitance of Ron Washington to put Joe Nathan into Friday night's game if he did indeed know something about the incident and Nathan was feeling any sort of after-effects from the altercation.
Second, it's troublesome that whatever the case may be, Scheppers allowed it to escalate to the point of physical confrontation. With a game the next day, one would hope he would make a smarter decision, but for some unknown reason, his pride was more important.
There are a lot of things that ail this Texas Rangers ball club right now, and quite honestly, bar fights shouldn't be at the top of the list. Those honors are usually reserved for the Dallas Cowboys, but for whatever reason, it's making more headlines than the fact that this team looks completely lost on the field right now.
Maybe we find out that there was a perfectly justified reason for all of this, but I'm skeptical that we'll see that happen. Until that time comes, however, I'm inclined to stand aside and just wonder what the hell is going on with this team right now.