Drama seems to stick to Manny Machado, and his recent one-game suspension is no different. The San Diego Padres third baseman said he is appealing the disciplinary action, given to him when he allegedly made contact with an umpire after an ejection.
The 26-year-old was called out looking on a third strike and disagreed with the call by home plate umpire Bill Welke. Machado was quickly tossed from the game, through his helmet to the ground, and then started swearing at Welke.
On his way to the dugout, he threw his bat against the backstop, while continuing a string of profanities.
Nunca había visto a Manny Machado tan molesto… pic.twitter.com/SrhwBdmA5z
— Héctor Gómez (@hgomez27) June 16, 2019
Machado wasn’t the only one ejected. manager Andy Green and pitcher Matt Strahm were also thrown out of Saturday’s game.
Suspension, then Controversy
It appears no one is happy with what happened. Machado is mad he was suspended, the umpire’s union was upset it was just one game. MLB was irked that the Major League Baseball Umpires Association (MLBUA) took to social media to criticize their actions.
Demanding a hearing with the league office is routine, and Machado denied touching Welke, and was hoping the league office would agree with him and rescind the suspension.
“We’re going to appeal it, and we think we’ve got a good case,” Machado told MLB.com
On Monday, the MLBUA took to Twitter and Facebook to blast the league for its response.
“Manny Machado received a one game suspension for contact with an umpire over balls and strikes and VIOLENTLY throwing his bat against the backstop with absolutely no regard to anyone’s safety. Violence in the workplace is not tolerated, and offenders are dealt with severely and even made examples of for the good of it’s employees, as well as the company itself. Is this truly what MLB wants to teach our youth?” they wrote on Twitter.
To emphasis their point, they put a string of hashtags at the bottom of the post: “Disappointed, LeadByExample, NotAppreciated, Violence, TemperTantrum, Inaction, NotTolerated, MakeanExampleof, OneGameSuspension, RepeatOffender, and Nonsense.”
MLB, Player’s Union Reacts
The MLBUA also posted a longer, and similar, post on Facebook criticizing MLB and Machado. Both of those posts didn’t sit well with the league, and the Major League Baseball Players Association , who both released a statement regarding the umpire’s response.
“The opportunity has always existed to discuss, privately, any concerns the MLBUA has. To the extent there is an interest to have a conversation about professionalism and accountability, we are more than willing to have it,” Tony Clark, MLBPA executive director said in a release.
Then MLB released this statement: “Manny Machado was suspended by MLB Chief Baseball Officer Joe Torre, who considered all the facts and circumstances of Machado’s conduct, including precedent, in determining the appropriate level of discipline. Mr. Machado is appealing his suspension and we do not believe it is appropriate for the union representing Major League Umpires to comment on the discipline of players represented by the Players Association, just as it would not be appropriate for the Players Association to comment on disciplinary decisions made with respect to umpires. We also believe it is inappropriate to compare this incident to the extraordinarily serious issue of workplace violence.”
Machado’s Rich Body of Work
Machado has been ejected five times in his career, but he also has a history of other troubling behavior. When he was with the Baltimore Orioles in 2017, he was the target of bean balls after a hard slide into Boston Red Sox’s second baseman Dustin Pedroia.
Last year when Machado was with the Dodgers, he was accused of not hustling on a couple of plays. One of those was in the playoffs when he hit what he thought was a home run. It hit the left field wall and Machado was jogging to first, limited to a long single.
In the postseason the free agent signed a 10-year, $300 million contract with the Padres. He is batting .261, and has 13 home runs.