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A’s take exception to Manny Machado’s antics

Jun 9, 2014, 11:19 AM EDT

The A’s had strong words for Baltimore Orioles third baseman Manny Machado after he threw his bat during an eighth-inning incident Sunday that cleared the benches at Camden Yards.

Machado sent his bat flying down the third-base line — seemingly intentionally –- after the second of two very inside pitches from A’s reliever Fernando Abad. The pitches surely were in response to the Orioles throwing inside and hitting Josh Donaldson on Friday, after Machado took exception to a tag from Donaldson.

John Jaso was the first A’s player to reach Machado after the benches cleared and got right in Machado’s face before Orioles first base coach Wayne Kirby separated the two. It added some late spice to a blowout the A’s won 11-1.

[RELATED: A's explode past Orioles, win 11-1]

“There’s times in baseball where a guy with that kind of talent (acts) like he’s got 10-plus years in the big leagues,” Jaso told CSN California’s Glen Kuiper and Ray Fosse after the game. “That doesn’t really fly well with me and I don’t think it flies well with a lot of players. Sometimes those guys need to be brought down a little bit so they play the game right.

“Obviously there’s a few examples from this series where he isn’t playing the game right, and it’s kind of a disrespect to the game. I know there’s veteran presences over there with the Orioles, and I think it’s up to them to kind of take control of the situation.”

The A’s also were ticked about a sixth-inning incident Sunday, when Machado’s bat twice hit A’s catcher Derek Norris unintentionally during his backswing. Norris was struck in the head with one of them and was so shaken up he had to leave the game. In the whole time Norris was being attended to at home plate, Machado never glanced in Norris’ direction or made any effort to apologize or ask if Norris was OK.

Norris told reporters he thinks he actually caught Machado smiling after one of the backswings, and labeled Machado’s behavior “a disgrace to baseball. Things like that stain your career.”

Norris said he passed his concussion tests, and manager Bob Melvin expects Norris to be available for Monday’s series opener against the Los Angeles Angels in Anaheim.

Machado and Abad both were ejected from the game over the eighth-inning incident. Afterward, Machado claimed that the bat slipped out of his hands.

The A’s weren’t buying it.

“That was the worst temper tantrum I’ve probably ever seen on a baseball field,” A’s starting pitcher Scott Kazmir said. “He tried to say that he lost the bat. That clearly wasn’t the case.”

  1. DelawarePhilliesFan - Jun 9, 2014 at 11:26 AM

    Acting like a 10 year vet…”he isn’t playing the game right”….”disrespect to the game”….Oriole veterans are told they need to “take control of the situation”….ignoring an unwritten rule to ask the catcher if he is ok….”“a disgrace to baseball. Things like that stain your career”

    It must be KILLING Craig not to jump to his defense

    • lukedunphysscienceproject - Jun 9, 2014 at 12:28 PM

      Baseball players drive me crazy. Is he saying that throwing bats at people is OK if you’re a 10 year vet? It’s not about playing the game the right way, it’s about being a human being the right way.

      • sophiethegreatdane - Jun 9, 2014 at 3:38 PM

        @lukedunphy: 100% correct. What does Machado’s tenure have to do with anything at all here?

        I’m a *huge* Manny fan — up until this weekend, he’s been the ideal young player: loads of talent, quiet and unassuming, no on-field or off-field antics, nothing to complain about.

        And then he blows up for an entire weekend, and acts like a punk. I’m stunned, and frankly, disappointed in the young man, who I thought had a better head on his shoulders.

        Regardless of his tenure, chucking a bat down the line is just flat-out wrong, irresponsible, and shameful. He deserves any suspension he gets, and I hope Buck came down on him HARD.

  2. chinahand11 - Jun 9, 2014 at 11:28 AM

    Stop being an azz, Manny, it isn’t necessary. Retribution is not healthy for your career.

    • sabatimus - Jun 9, 2014 at 11:49 AM

      Yep. Neither is developing a reputation for being a phallus, especially this early.

  3. kevinbnyc - Jun 9, 2014 at 11:33 AM

    Why does it always come down to “playing the game the right way” or “respecting the game”? Why can’t guys just say “I think he was acting like an asshole” and avoid sounding like a douche?

    • clydeserra - Jun 9, 2014 at 11:44 AM

      right?!?

      That’s the thing. he is acting like an ass. it doesn’t matter what his job is.

    • gloccamorra - Jun 9, 2014 at 12:16 PM

      Those are the code words of baseball. They can mean different things in different situations, but the comment about Orioles veterans taking charge tells you that’s exactly what the code words mean here.

      Machado has been acting like a kid, but hitting catchers in the head with exaggerated follow through swings and throwing his bat (even the umpires thought it was intentional) down the third base line shows a cavalier attitude toward injuring other players.

      Unless that behavior stops – fast – this won’t end well, for Machado or MLB.

      • kevinbnyc - Jun 10, 2014 at 9:50 AM

        I know it’s “code words,” but they’re not needed. He hurt somebody. He acted like a petulant child. These are OK things to say. You don’t need your own language.

  4. pinkfloydprism - Jun 9, 2014 at 11:34 AM

    This kid needs to grow up and fast…

  5. cshearing - Jun 9, 2014 at 11:36 AM

    So if Machado was a 10-year vet, the bat throw is okay? What a bunch of BS. You win 11-1 and then get mad at the losing team for some perceived slight against “the game”? Baseball is turning into a caricature of itself.

    • [citation needed] fka COPO - Jun 9, 2014 at 12:47 PM

      mad at the losing team for some perceived slight against “the game”?

      The A’s are mad because it’s possible Machado knocked their catcher out of the game. The A’s are made because Machado tried to throw his bat at the pitcher. They aren’t mad because he’s disrespecting the rules of the game, they are made because he intentionally tried to hurt one person and possibly a second.

  6. madhatternalice - Jun 9, 2014 at 11:38 AM

    Not excusing Machado at all, but this sentence is everything that’s wrong with baseball right now:

    “Sometimes those guys need to be brought down a little bit so they play the game right.”

    • sabatimus - Jun 9, 2014 at 11:48 AM

      I don’t think I interpreted that statement as you did.

  7. hcf95688 - Jun 9, 2014 at 11:44 AM

    If Machado is smart (OK…he hasn’t shown any smarts, so let me revise and say “If Machado’s agent/advisers/posse is smart”), he will appeal any suspension and drag it out until mid July, and then accept the punishment over the July 18-20 weekend when the Orioles visit Oakland. This is one time where the cowards way out might just be the best choice.

    If he does indeed show up at the Coliseum he is assured three days of Hell. A’s and Raiders don’t really attract the same crowd, but Raider Fan is generally ready to come out. Its not a huge leap to envision a very special welcome for this young man.

    • DelawarePhilliesFan - Jun 9, 2014 at 11:54 AM

      The only problem with that is that players don’t have a lot of say over when the appeal is heard. MLB will pick an off day and say “Ok, lets go”. I’m not sure Machado would be able to claim he needs time for a defense – he can’t exactly say he need to interview witnesses or wait for results from a lab.

      I think any appeal will have runs it course by the All Star break at the latest.

      • scoochpooch - Jun 9, 2014 at 12:18 PM

        you cant be sure of the appeal date unless you were on the red sox in the mid-00s. they always managed to postpone suspension until weak teams were next on the schedule.

    • clydeserra - Jun 9, 2014 at 11:54 AM

      You think that he is going to be assaulted? I hope not.

      Is he going to be booed? OK. he cares, why?

      • scoochpooch - Jun 9, 2014 at 12:19 PM

        who knows, maybe an asault would solve this situation after all?

      • ctony1216 - Jun 9, 2014 at 2:04 PM

        At most, some baby pacifiers might be tossed from the stands, along with some “Mommy, he tagged me too hard! Wahhh!” signs, and chants of “Ba-by” every time he comes up. Nothing too crazy.

      • chinahand11 - Jun 9, 2014 at 3:15 PM

        Sometimes assault from a similar source (other ballplayer) may help to mature a young man who may not be in control of his emotions and temper. This, in the psychiatric health care profession, is known as “peer counseling.” Peer counseling has been known to help one grasp control of their angry emotions, and generally this is because said young man learns he cannot get away with “acting out” as Manny is doing these days. Not that I would ever condone peer counseling, never, but it does happen.

  8. sabatimus - Jun 9, 2014 at 11:47 AM

    Not sure what having 10 years in the show has to do with having a massive attitude problem, but I think Jaso was probably still POed and didn’t choose his words correctly.

    I wonder who’s going to knock the crap out of Machado if he keeps this up.

    • hittfamily - Jun 9, 2014 at 12:42 PM

      Headline in the Tampa Bay Times the next time Baltimore comes to town: “Rays sign Kyle Farnsworth for 1 night only.”

  9. nomoreseasontix - Jun 9, 2014 at 11:53 AM

    Where’s Nolan Ryan when you need him?

    • jerze2387 - Jun 9, 2014 at 12:28 PM

      He sure straightened robin Ventura out

  10. scoutsaysweitersisabust - Jun 9, 2014 at 11:54 AM

    Hmmmm…..

    • moogro - Jun 9, 2014 at 12:48 PM

      I love the milk man delivery costume the umps used to wear.

  11. hittfamily - Jun 9, 2014 at 12:23 PM

    Why was Abad tossed? Machado swung. It was a strike. The goal is for the pitcher to throw strikes right? Well, he threw a strike. He should not have been tossed.

    Machado needs to be suspended at least 50 games. I’m tired of the 3 game suspensions for people who should be charged with a crime. Bats can kill people. He threw his 3 pound bat as hard as he could hoping it would hit someone. Just 2 innings before he knocked a player out of the game with his bat, so he knew the damage it was capable of.

    • karlkolchak - Jun 9, 2014 at 12:58 PM

      Absolutely. 50 games seems about right considering the totality of the crap this punk pulled during the series.

      • jennstergersburnedretinas - Jun 9, 2014 at 3:28 PM

        So 50 games for:

        Getting in someone face, albeit for a tag that was by no means “too hard”.

        Throwing a bat.

        The punishment does not fit the crime. Manny is 100% wrong but I’m guessing you guys are the kind that want to see children expelled for bringing toy guns to school mistakenly and then turning themselves in. Sad really.

    • blabidibla - Jun 9, 2014 at 3:12 PM

      “It was obvious the pitcher threw at him the second time,” crew chief Larry Vanover said. “The first time you have some doubt, but the second time there was no doubt he threw at him. And then he threw the bat. That wasn’t accidental.”

      I guess Abad was thrown out because of the preceding pitch. Perhaps if Vanover had done his job when he was supposed to, the bat never would have been tossed.

      • jeffbbf - Jun 9, 2014 at 3:29 PM

        I found that comment by him interesting, because Chen obviously threw at Donaldson twice – hitting him the 2nd time – but Chen wasn’t ejected. I think they’re making this stuff up as they go.

  12. peymax1693 - Jun 9, 2014 at 12:25 PM

    I perhaps would have had a tiny bit of respect for Machado if he had charged the mound (even though I don’t think he had any right to be angry after the crap he pulled on Friday night), but throwing the bat was such a cowardly response.

  13. aceinthehole12 - Jun 9, 2014 at 12:41 PM

    Chen threw up and in at JD on fire. Did Machado honestly think he wasn’t going to get hit at any point this weekend ? I’m glad Jaso got in Manny’s face like that though.

  14. eagles512 - Jun 9, 2014 at 12:52 PM

    He’s an embarrassment. Hope guys like Davis wake this idiot up.

  15. bubbalynch - Jun 9, 2014 at 12:55 PM

    I am pretty sure Machado (douche) will have a phantom injury when the O’s visit Oakland later this season.

  16. psunick - Jun 9, 2014 at 2:39 PM

    Come on, Craig. You’ve got to chime in on this. This was one of the top stories over the weekend; you can’t duck it.

    Especially with your history of standing up for those who’ve been “misunderstood.” We want to know where you are with this.

    • sophiethegreatdane - Jun 9, 2014 at 3:46 PM

      I think Craig has been pretty clear on it. I don’t see anyone, Orioles fans included, defending Machado’s actions.

    • [citation needed] fka COPO - Jun 9, 2014 at 4:02 PM

      Especially with your history of standing up for those who’ve been “misunderstood.” We want to know where you are with this.

      Considering yours, and other’s, history of completely missing Craig’s point, why should he?

  17. mikhelb - Jun 9, 2014 at 4:52 PM

    “Machado’s bat twice hit A’s catcher Derek Norris unintentionally during his backswing.”

    Supposedly the distance between the batter and the catcher is big enough that a backswing shouldn’t reach the catcher… I wonder how close to the batter the catcher was, not defending Machado but if the catcher moved towards the batter to be able to stick his glove in the strike zone, and part of his body would be reachable by the backswing, then the culprit is the catcher and MLB should look onto that to make sure the catchers are not putting their integrity nor the batters at risk (hitting something while in the backswing while holding the bat with a hand, can hurt a player’s wrist).

    • fairandbalance - Jun 10, 2014 at 4:22 PM

      Consider this.
      Responding to a tag for an out which was necessary to play the game of baseball,
      Donaldson got drilled. If Chen has any intelligence, he should not take any revenge.
      Norris got hit on the head twice. Why Norris was hit twice by Machado, but not anyone else, you think that Norris would purposely move closer to receive the hits from Machado?
      From the video, Machado clearly threw his bat way after (half a second???) after the second inside pitch. This can hurt or kill someone either, the pitcher, 3rd baseman or some kids in the stand.
      Machado was showing off his uncontrollable temper, responding to what? He should receive that tag gracefully just like any other professionals which was part of the game. If he can’t do that, he shouldn’t be in the game.
      For whatever reasons, people keeps on defending him will aid and abet his behavior and temper and for the long term, eventually he would kill someone for minor inflections.

  18. scoutsaysweitersisabust - Jun 9, 2014 at 6:02 PM

    Not sure it will make any difference as people already have the pitchforks out and are ready to tar and feather this kid, but here is his apology for his part in this weekend’s activities.

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