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Shocker: Yunel Escobar does something kinda jerky

May 21, 2013, 12:30 PM EDT

Tampa Bay Rays v Toronto Blue Jays Getty Images

I know it’s hard to believe that a guy who alienated his entire clubhouse in Atlanta and then made headlines buy putting homophobic slurs on his eyeblack in Toronto did something douchey, but in this case it actually happened.

Yunel Escobar, ladies and gents, playing Jedi master to Jordany Valdespin‘s padawan, strutting after a home run when he had gone 0-for-3 on the day and had a throwing error in a game his team was losing:

Tampa Bay Rays manager Joe Maddon said during spring training that he anticipated a time when he would have to call SS Yunel Escobar into his office to discuss some on-field behavior. That time has arrived.

Maddon wasn’t pleased with the way Escobar made the safe sign as he stepped on home plate while completing his two-run, ninth-inning home run during Monday’s 7-5 loss to the Blue Jays.

Escobar’s defense was that he does that every time he hits a home run.

Well, my son used a diaper every time he had to take a dump until he was potty trained. He eventually figured out that he shouldn’t do that forever because to do so reflected on his maturity level.

  1. chacochicken - May 21, 2013 at 12:35 PM

    He seems like the kind of guy that could catch a good garden hose beatin’. He’s too old to change but it’ll make everyone else feel better.

    • skinsfanwill - May 21, 2013 at 2:20 PM

      Damn, a garden hose beatin’? If that can’t straighten him out, nothing can.

    • stlouis1baseball - May 21, 2013 at 2:27 PM

      A garden hose beatin’? Seriously? A damn garden hose? Aren’t they like…rubbery and stuff?
      I mean….wouldn’t that be similar to getting hit with an oversized wet noodle?
      Garden hose. I had to pick out my own switch. And that was when I DIDN”T get whipped with the metal end of a fly swatter. True story.

      • chacochicken - May 21, 2013 at 2:41 PM

        Ahhh, you sir have never been beaten with a hose before. Take a decent 3/4 inch diameter hose and cut off about 36 inches or so. Run a little water through it. Identify target. I would only recommend deserving adults. Try it out on yourself and you’ll soon realize the physics of the device.
        When I lived in the city, a man attempted to steal my catalytic converter by climbing underneath and cutting it with a sawzall. I was half asleep in a chair in my tiny yard and the sound quickly woke me. I pick up the first thing I could which happened to be my garden hose which was already next to the car from washing it earlier that day. I took off the nozzle then proceeded to beat the shit out of this guy’s midsection, testicles, and legs. He begged me to stop and I let him limp off. I did have to get the exhaust welded but I got a free sawzall out of the deal.

    • stlouis1baseball - May 21, 2013 at 2:45 PM

      Hahaha! Hell of a story. Good for you Man. Good for you. Wish I could have witnessed that.
      Hilarious stuff. Sorry about the repair work though. I guess I just come from the standpoint of…how does it get worse then a switch or metal end of a fly swatter?

      answer: garden hose.

    • shwoogy1 - May 21, 2013 at 3:46 PM

      I’m thinking on more along the lines of his parents using a hanger or a switch. Those were the two keystone abuse tools back in my day. They did the trick on me that’s for sure. But what I would give to slap the shit out of this guy.

      • stlouis1baseball - May 21, 2013 at 4:55 PM

        Hell yes Woogy! My father was the switch (mostly). My Mother was the fly swatter handle (always). And boy did they get my attention.
        Sadly…today they would be in jail.
        And I would be out on the streets getting in “real” trouble.

  2. indaburg - May 21, 2013 at 12:36 PM

    Give him hell, Joe. Yunel, you are a dumbass.

    • cur68 - May 21, 2013 at 12:44 PM

      I am all for your boys getting nice and demoralized. None of that Rays Way pride, eh?

      • indaburg - May 21, 2013 at 3:43 PM

        Contrary to certain commenters’ opinions, douchebaggery is not the Rays Way. I’m sure Maddon handled this in a way that didn’t break Yunel’s spirit, but also let him know that this will not be tolerated.

    • lukescottsbedsidemanner - May 21, 2013 at 12:46 PM

      i like it when you swear. can you say “mangos” for me?

      • indaburg - May 21, 2013 at 2:30 PM

        I’ll throw a pig spear in your buttocks.

  3. cur68 - May 21, 2013 at 12:43 PM

    On the whole, I’d like Yunel to act like he’s been there before, but this business is getting blown up out proportion. I see guys thank god. I see guys flip that bat and fist pump their way around the bases. The elaborate bro-gestures with their teammates in the dugout. All of that and no one one says ANYTHING about it. So what if he makes that safe sign? To play well you gotta enjoy yourself. Kid’s not a robot, for dog’s sake. They are grown ups and having a bit of fun is what its about. The other team’s gonna get their lil feelin’s hurt? Too effin bad. Beat him at baseball, then.

    The only thing Joe-Mads should say to him is “I wanna see that safe sign a lot more”.

    • paperlions - May 21, 2013 at 1:13 PM

      Yeah, I don’t see any difference between this and all the pointing and gesturing guys do when they start their HR trot or when they are on base after a hit, or the silly and tired heart tapping/sky pointing as a guy crosses home (as if god just didn’t like the pitcher or something). I am all for enthusiasm, if guys want to show it…and if you are going to allow all of that other stuff without saying anything…then there is no reason to single out Escobar here. Different version of the same crap.

      • historiophiliac - May 21, 2013 at 1:27 PM

        What does Kozma do?

      • paperlions - May 21, 2013 at 1:30 PM

        Don’t know. I’ll let you know when he does something worth celebrating.


      • historiophiliac - May 21, 2013 at 1:40 PM


      • paperlions - May 21, 2013 at 1:41 PM

        No peanuts?

      • historiophiliac - May 21, 2013 at 1:42 PM

        Not for that comment. That was some lousy homering. Also, you haven’t given me the OK updates lately.

      • paperlions - May 21, 2013 at 1:43 PM

        …and I am pretty sure that if Kozma hit a grand slam in the bottom of the 17th inning, in games 7 of the World Series, with two outs and his team down 3 runs, he’d trot around the bases quickly and show no expression whatsoever.

        In the post-game interview, he would probably call the experience “pretty neat” and say he was just glad he could help the team…and he would actually be sincere.

      • historiophiliac - May 21, 2013 at 1:44 PM

        Muuuuch better.

      • paperlions - May 21, 2013 at 1:50 PM

        I think it’s also true. You can tell he really appreciates this opportunity…but he is NOT an excitable kind of guy.

      • mgdsquiggy17 - May 21, 2013 at 3:38 PM

        “then there is no reason to single out Escobar here”

        Sure there is. It fits with the pattern of hate (or whatever you want to call it) towards Escobar (not saying he hasn’t done more then his share of d-bag things) from CC.

      • paperlions - May 21, 2013 at 3:52 PM

        That was kind of implied. :-)

        I realize he’s a d-bag…but some things he does (like this one) aren’t one of the things that make him a d-bag…..kind of like, there are plenty of reasons to think Selig is a horrible commissioner, but him presiding over the steroid era isn’t one of them (no one cared at the time, it wasn’t just Selig).

    • stlouis1baseball - May 21, 2013 at 2:28 PM

      The difference in this case is Yunel was playing like Fido’s ass with an 0-3 night and a throwing error while his TEAM was getting their asses handed to them. So yeah…it was chumpish.

  4. billyboots - May 21, 2013 at 12:43 PM

    This guy will talk himself out of another job. He really reminds me of a Denis Rodman- or Terrell Owens-type of player. The team will put up with you as long as you play at a high level, but as soon as you start to show any signs of decline, the pink slip is hanging in your locker.

    • js20011041 - May 21, 2013 at 1:01 PM

      He’s Dennis Rodman or Terrell Owens without the talent. Barry Bonds may have been a jerk, but at least he was an incredible player. I think that when the Rays made an organizational decision to disregard player character, they missed the part about acquiring TALENTED jerks.

  5. slclions - May 21, 2013 at 12:56 PM

    jays fan here…we boo him, he can give it back to us. It’s just a game folks. People needs to relax.

  6. rdillon99 - May 21, 2013 at 1:01 PM

    Blue Jays fans booed him at every opportunity yesterday (and other than the eye black incident, I don’t really understand why they would do that). In any event, I’m sure that after getting booed in every other at-bat, he felt pretty good about himself or at least somewhat vindicated with the home-run. As a Blue Jays fan, I don’t have a problem with it…. And neither did Casey Janssen who gave up the home-run.

    • proudlycanadian - May 21, 2013 at 1:29 PM

      Agreed. Janssen saw nothing wrong in it. He did say that Escobar had been a good team mate and that Escobar probably made the safe sigh because of all the booing.

  7. scoocha - May 21, 2013 at 1:02 PM

    Meet Scoocha, the dude who just got banned for using racial slurs. [CC]

    • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - May 21, 2013 at 1:14 PM

      Meet scoocha, the next contestant on “who wants to get banned for making racist comments?”

      • stlouis1baseball - May 21, 2013 at 2:32 PM

        What did I miss?

    • historiophiliac - May 21, 2013 at 2:09 PM

      Dangit, now I wanna give it a thumbs up. lol

      • historiophiliac - May 21, 2013 at 2:10 PM

        With CC’s correction, I mean.

  8. deathmonkey41 - May 21, 2013 at 1:11 PM

    Yunel Escobar thinks this post is kinda gay.

  9. vallewho - May 21, 2013 at 1:13 PM

    Someone should tell Yunel that on a HR, there is no need for a “safe” (or “out”) signal. I’ve seen players do it on close bang-bang running plays. His little display just seems out of place.

    I would like to see a whole opposing team punk him by doing the safe sign every time they make a play. I think he would get the point then…

  10. Darkoestrada - May 21, 2013 at 1:21 PM

    No big deal. That’s just yunel being yunel

    • abaird2012 - May 21, 2013 at 1:47 PM

      Yunel doesn’t get to be Yunel until his on-field performance merits it.

  11. steve7921 - May 21, 2013 at 1:24 PM

    Really…the safe sign is now a problem!

    Hey Joe, what is the difference between Escobar’s safe sign and Rodney shooting an arrow?

  12. thomas844 - May 21, 2013 at 1:26 PM

    I hope Maddon straightens him out. Maddon is a classy, respectable manager, so I’m sure that’s not the kind of image he wants his Rays team to have.

    • thomas844 - May 21, 2013 at 1:27 PM

      Escobar’s behavior is not the image he wants the Rays to have is what I meant to say.

  13. evanwins - May 21, 2013 at 1:32 PM

    I don’t understand why pitchers, mainly closers, can celebrate all they want and “show up” the batter with all their antics and hitters can’t do anything without offending the other team, Fernando Rodney with his bow and arrow routine, Soriano with his shirt out, Papelbon with his dance, any pitcher after a big strike out, etc… This seems pretty parallel to a bat flip or admiring a long shot. What makes it further confounding is that the pitcher wins the battle most of the time so their celebrating is even more out of line.

    If they don’t want it rubbed in their faces when they fail they shouldn’t rub it in the hitters face when he fails.

    I don’t like ANY of the on-field celebrating personally, regardless of who is doing it. This stuff should stay in football and basketball where those types of people play.

    • Kevin S. - May 21, 2013 at 2:04 PM

      I don’t get why people lump Soriano in that category. He doesn’t make a big show of things, just a simple untucking of his shirt once his job’s done. Nowhere near the level of Papelbon or Valverde.

      • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - May 21, 2013 at 2:12 PM

        I really really really want someone to hit a walk-off HR off Valverde and do that “looks like i’m taking a shit on the mound” action on home plate.

    • mgdsquiggy17 - May 21, 2013 at 4:11 PM

      Who exactly are “those types of people”????

  14. elmo - May 21, 2013 at 2:05 PM

    Not really feelin’ the jerkiness here. Maybe if he grabbed his crotch or flipped the bird or something, but this is no big deal.

  15. geoknows - May 21, 2013 at 2:14 PM

    Why would Maddon wait until after his fourth home run with the Rays to say something when he does it every time he hits one? Seems a bit disingenuine on Maddon’s part to me.

  16. Jason Collette - May 21, 2013 at 3:01 PM

    How is this any different than the Claw/Antler stuff the Rangers do, or the existing archering stuff the rest of the Rays already do? This 10x more about who did it than what was done.

  17. jazynaz - May 21, 2013 at 3:54 PM

    i agree with CC’s inference. it’s not shocking that escobar acted like a jerk, AGAIN! the only good thing you can say about the arrogant, insecure “little man” (referring to his gay slur) is that he’s consistently a jerk. you always know something stupid will be coming from him again at any moment. yuni being yuni just isn’t good enough on the field to counter his brainless actions and words! he’s just not too bright…and that’s being diplomatic!

  18. dowhatifeellike - May 21, 2013 at 6:30 PM

    Funny how there are more people defending the spitballer than some guy just acting like a douche.

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