Whether or not Joe Maddon should have tried to justify Joel Peralta using pine tar is up for debate. But what is not in doubt is why Maddon was so vocal. He is like a parent, and those players are his children. And he will ALWAYS defend those players.
So when Maddon was faced with a well-known local heckler, he just couldn’t let it go. Maddon tossed the fan a ball with a note that most Rays fans already know about Maddon: “Stick up for those you care about.”