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Word just came out that Major League Baseball will be suspending New York Yankees third baseman Josh Donaldson for one game for “inappropriate comments” made to Chicago White Sox shortstop Tim Anderson Saturday.
In case you missed it (only reason I caught wind of it was because of Twitter, I never watch baseball games live), benches cleared Saturday afternoon in a midday game between the Yankees and White Sox after a comment was made by Donaldson after he was rounding the bases.
Later in the game, Anderson’s teammate stood up to Donaldson while he was at home plate to confront him on what he said earlier in the game, and that’s when all hell broke loose…kinda.
Post-game interviews in both locker rooms revealed what was said that led to the altercation, and to be honest I was pretty shocked at what it was.
“He made a disrespectful comment,” Anderson told the media in a post-game interview. “Basically you know, he was tryin’ to call me Jackie Robinson like ‘wassup Jackie’?”
Anderson once described himself as “today’s Jackie Robinson”
At face value when I first heard that I thought “you know what, that is pretty damn ignorant and I’m actually kinda shocked things didn’t escalate more on the field.
But then more and more information began making the rounds on Twitter and I got a clearer picture.
In a 2019 interview with Sports Illustrated, Anderson described himself as “today’s Jackie Robinson” where he’s “getting to a point where [he] needs to change the game.”
It wasn’t something Donaldson just randomly said on a whim, he was referencing an article where Anderson had compared himself to the MLB legend (the fact that he’s referencing an article from three years ago is petty af, which baseball players are notoriously petty af).
Now I’m not saying Anderson should not have felt disrespected by what was said, that’s not my place to do that. I acknowledge that everyone is entitled to their own feelings. What I will say is I feel like there are bigger, and more pressing battles to have when it comes to racial equality, especially in sports.
He didn’t call him “boy” or anything like that, he called him the name of arguably one of the most important sports figures of this past century. Also, he called him Jackie AFTER Anderson already compared himself to the great. To me, that’s making a mountain out of a molehill.
Teammates voice support for Anderson
Anderson’s teammate that stood up for him went on to say post-game “a comment like that is just unacceptable. It’s something that should not be allowed.”
The MLB announced that Josh Donaldson will be suspended for one game for the comment.
“MLB has completed the process of speaking to the individuals involved in this incident. There is no dispute over what was said on the field. Regardless of Mr. Donaldson’s intent, the comment he directed toward Mr. Anderson was disrespectful and in poor judgment, particularly when viewed in the context of their prior interactions. In addition, Mr. Donaldson’s remark was a contributing factor in a bench-clearing incident between the teams, and warrants discipline,” Michael Hill, MLB’s senior vice president for on-field operations said in a statement.
Donaldson said he will be appealing his suspension.