Boston Red Sox ace Chris Sale threw behind Baltimore Orioles third baseman Manny Machado (which you can see here) in the first inning on Tuesday’s game. It was the second time in the young season where Machado was the target of a Red Sox pitch.
Following the game, Machado was not happy. He went on an expletive laden rant directed at the Boston organization. The rant did not upset Baltimore manager Buck Showalter, however. In fact, he was happy to see his star playing let his emotions go.
“I’d rather him get that out than opposed to pin it on,” Showalter said, per Coley Harvey, ESPN. “It was there. Walk a mile in his shoes before you start saying something because it’s a tough pair of shoes to walk in.”
Certainly there’s no problem with Showalter sticking up for his star. That’s pro forma in baseball and has been since the first game was ever played. But is his public stance the correct one?
There’s certainly some logic to it.
Granted, a tirade that sounds like it belongs on “The Jerry Springer Show” isn’t a great look. Still, it is better than engaging in a brawl, which Machado has done in the past. Saving up his anger for a post game tirade doesn’t seem so bad. It’s a fairly good step in the right direction, actually.
The problem is that it’s adding more gasoline on to an already red hot fire. These two teams are still going to see an awful lot of each other throughout the remaining months of the 2017 season. Rob Manfred might have put his foot down on the matter, but he’s not on the field to police these guys.
The Red Sox players are going to remember this tirade. If nothing else, it will make them more mad the next time Machado has a hard slide at second, or takes his time rounding the bases after a home run.
Chances are that we’re not done with the drama. These two American League East rivals can use something to ease the tension. Machado’s tirade certainly isn’t going to do that.