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TON -- Of course that triple carried extra meaning for Mark Teixeira, and he wasn't afraid to say so. The Yankees' first baseman has never made a pretense of hiding his disdain when it comes to Red Sox right-hander Vicente Padilla. They don't like each other, and they haven't for a long time.
Teixeira ripped a go-ahead three-bagger to right-center in the seventh inning of a 10-8 Yanks win on Friday night at Fenway Park. That was the third hit of his career off Padilla -- the same number of times Padilla has hit the slugger lifetime -- and Teixeira's first since he homered off the right-hander in their first two meetings seven years ago.
"The guy throws at people," said Teixeira, who's 3-for-11 lifetime against Padilla with two strikeouts, three walks and six RBIs. "Fact of the matter; I'm not saying anything that's news. It is what it is.
"I've always been someone that wants to play the game the right way. You play hard, but you don't play cheap. I've always lived that way, too. Some guys decide to take matters in their own hands."
Padilla, 2-0 with a 4.02 ERA, has been strong this season and came into Friday night with a 13-game scoreless streak. He did not speak to reporters after the game, and for Red Sox manager Bobby Valentine, the drama is irrelevant.
"I didn't care about the personal stuff," Valentine said. "I knew he was 2-for-10 with a couple of home runs, but that wasn't this year, with the way Padilla has been throwing."
Teixeira's first two plate appearances against Padilla, when the former was with the Rangers and the latter with the Phillies, were home runs. That was on June 9, 2005. The third at-bat the game? Padilla hit Teixeira.
The two didn't face each other again until 2008, by which time they had already played together from 2006-07 in Texas. While they were teammates, Teixeira asked Padilla to stop hitting batters because opposing teams would retaliate against Teixeira and the rest of the Rangers lineup. Teixeira said he didn't get a response.
It wasn't until June 2, 2009, that Padilla, still with the Rangers, hit Teixeira, then a Yankee, twice in a game. They faced each other in one other game before Friday.
"There's only one guy in baseball," Teixeira said on Friday night. "No one else does this. That's the thing that's unbelievable to me. No one else in baseball does this. Whether he's changed his ways, I hope he does. The guy's a good pitcher; he's got really good stuff. It would be nice to just talk to him as a baseball player, not someone who throws at people."
Only one other pitcher, Barry Zito, has hit Teixeira three times in his career. Padilla has hit more batters than all but two active pitchers, Jamie Moyer and Jamey Wright, both of whom are older. The right-hander had a public dust-up with outfielder Marlon Byrd, another former teammate in Texas as well as Boston.
"I was making some jokes that I have to get in line," Teixeira said. "He doesn't have a lot of friends in the game."