White Sox Manager Tony La Russa didn’t mince phrases when he was requested what occurred between Yankees third baseman Josh Donaldson and Chicago shortstop Tim Anderson.
“He made a racist comment,” La Russa mentioned of Donaldson. “That’s all I’m going to say.”
Shortly after the Yankees beat Chicago at Yankee Stadium, 7-5, on Saturday, Donaldson, who’s white, admitted to calling Anderson, who’s Black, “Jackie” within the first inning. Anderson mentioned it occurred twice within the recreation. Anderson deemed the reference to Jackie Robinson, who broke Major League Baseball’s shade barrier with the Brooklyn Dodgers in 1947, “disrespectful” earlier than agreeing together with his supervisor that the comment was racist.
“Basically, he was trying to call me Jackie Robinson,” Anderson mentioned. “He was like, ‘Hey, what’s up Jackie?’ I don’t play like that. I don’t really play at all. I wasn’t really going to bother nobody today, but he made the comment, and you know, it was disrespectful and I don’t think it was called for. It was unnecessary.”
Anderson and Donaldson exchanged phrases on the sector early within the recreation. The state of affairs escalated within the fifth inning when White Sox catcher Yasmani Grandal confronted Donaldson as he stepped into the batter’s field. Grandal, pointing towards Anderson at shortstop, acquired head to head with Donaldson, and the benches cleared. Anderson, jogging in from quick, was restrained by teammates and refrained from Donaldson. There had been no punches thrown.
“This game went through a period in time where a lot of those comments were meant, and I think we’re way past that,” Grandal mentioned after the sport. “It’s just unacceptable. I just thought it was a low blow, and I want to make sure I’ve got my team’s back. There’s no way that you’re allowed to say something like that.
“Believe me, you don’t want me to tell you guys what I told him.”
There had been no additional incidents between the gamers throughout Sunday’s doubleheader, however there was loads of emotion from each Anderson and the followers at Yankee Stadium.
After sitting out the primary recreation of Sunday’s doubleheader towards the Yankees, which the White Sox gained, 3-1, Anderson was booed all through the evening recreation. He acquired the final phrase, nonetheless, as he went 3 for five and his three-run dwelling run capped a five-run eighth inning in Chicago’s 5-0 win. As he rounded the bases, he mocked the Bronx cheers by holding his proper index finger to his lips.
Whether or not Donaldson could be disciplined following Saturday’s incident remained unclear. Multiple media shops reported that M.L.B. would examine what occurred.
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“I don’t believe there was any malicious intent in that regard,” Yankees Manager Aaron Boone mentioned earlier than Sunday’s video games. “But you know, this is — just in my opinion — somewhere he should not be going.”
On Saturday, Donaldson acknowledged he had referred to as Anderson “Jackie,” however mentioned he has been calling him that for years. He claimed it was a long-running joke between them, stemming from a 2019 Sports Illustrated article wherein Anderson mentioned, “I kind of feel like today’s Jackie Robinson.”
Anderson was talking on his need to introduce extra character and aptitude to baseball’s historically reserved tradition, an effort that Anderson has obtained pushback for at instances throughout his career.
“So first inning, I called him ‘Jackie.’ Let me give you a little context of that,” Donaldson started. “In 2019, he came out with an interview, said that he’s the new Jackie Robinson of baseball and he’s going to bring back fun for the game, right? In 2019, when I played for Atlanta, we actually joked about that in the game.
“I don’t know what’s changed, and I’ve said it to him in years past. Not in any manner than just joking around for the fact that he called himself Jackie Robinson. So if something has changed from that — my meaning of that is not in any term trying to be racist by any fact of the matter. It was just off an interview.”
Donaldson added: “Obviously, he deemed that it was disrespectful. And look, if he did, I apologize. That’s not what I was trying to do, by any manner.”
For Anderson, there was no humor to be discovered.
“That happened in the first, the first time he got on, and I spared him that time,” Anderson mentioned. “And then it happened again. It’s just uncalled for.”
Donaldson mentioned he could be open to having a non-public dialog with Anderson. His characterization of the state of affairs raised some eyebrows, although, as Anderson and the White Sox haven’t had an excellent current historical past with Donaldson. Just final week, Anderson took exception to a bodily tag from Donaldson when the groups performed in Chicago. On an tried pickoff play at third base, Donaldson pushed Anderson off the bag, in the end leading to a secure name. That resulted in an trade of phrases and a modest bench clearing.
Donaldson additionally had run-ins with the White Sox in 2021 whereas he was a member of the Twins, who, like Chicago, play within the American League Central. In one such matchup, Donaldson homered off the White Sox ace Lucas Giolito. As Donaldson crossed dwelling plate, he might be heard yelling, “Hands not sticky anymore,” a nod to M.L.B.’s crackdown on pitchers utilizing overseas substances.
Afterward, Giolito referred to as Donaldson a “pest” and mentioned that if the infielder had an issue with him, he ought to say so to his face. Donaldson then informed reporters that he confronted Giolito within the stadium’s parking zone.
On Saturday, Donaldson mentioned that he took duty for final week’s tag on Anderson and was attempting to “make light” of the continued stress in an try and defuse issues. “We’re not trying to start any brawls or anything like that,” Donaldson mentioned.
White Sox nearer Liam Hendriks, a former teammate of Donaldson’s, called Donaldson’s interpretation of occasions “straight delusional.” He added: “Usually, you have inside jokes with people you get along with, not people that don’t get along at all.”
“He lives in his own world,” Grandal mentioned of Donaldson whereas additionally mentioning the dispute with Giolito.
“I’m sure any other team would have reacted the same way. Like I said, a comment like that is just unacceptable.”
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