New York Yankees third baseman Josh Donaldson has received a one-game suspension and an undisclosed fine for his inappropriate comments during Saturday’s game against the Chicago White Sox. Michael Hill, Major League Baseball’s Senior Vice President for On-Field Operations, made the announcement.
Donaldson started a melee of sorts when he referred to Chicago White Sox shortstop Tim Anderson, who is Black, as “Jackie” (Robinson) several times during the game. Anderson didn’t take kindly to the comment, which Donaldson says afterwards was an inside joke between them. Anderson, who referred to himself as the new Jackie Robinson as far as bringing excitement and diversity to the game is concerned, denies agreeing to these kinds of shenanigans with Anderson. Legendary manager Tony LaRussa straight up called Donaldson’s comments “racist.” His Latin teammate, catcher Yasmani Grandale also defended Anderson, getting up in Donaldson’s face.
Hill said: “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.”
The suspension of Donaldson had been scheduled to be effective tonight, when the Yankees are to host the Baltimore Orioles. However, Donaldson has elected to appeal. Thus, the discipline will be held in abeyance until the process is complete.