This week in baseball

This Week in Baseball: Suspensions and More COVID – 8/18/2020

www.franchisesportsmedia.com

 

As we take a look at this week in baseball, there are two occurences in the MLB that are definitely worth focusing on.

 

4 Games in the corner for Laureano, 20 games For Cintron

 

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Photo Credit: Sports Odds Digest

Last week, Oakland A’s outfielder Ramon Laureano and Houston Astros hitting coach Alex Cintron were given their punishment after the bench-clearing altercation. Cintron was given a 20-game suspension for inciting the whole incident, and much deserved I might add because his actions were flat out ridiculous.

Laureano was given a 6- game suspension for charging the dugout and causing the benches to clear, but it has now been reduced to 4 games after appealing the suspension. Laureano will return in the Oakland A’s/Diamondback series.

The whole incident escalated when Cintron started yelling things at Laureano from the dugout. Laureano was walking to first base after being hit with a breaking ball by pitcher Humberto Castellanos. If you watch the footage (I highly recommend looking up Jomboy media on youtube, because he breaks down the whole scene entirely), you can see that Laureano had decided just to take the hit. He even gave his advice to make sure his breaking balls actually…well, break.

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Photo Credit: Awesemo.com

He was resistant to Cintron’s comments at first, but Laureano claims Cintron made derogatory comments in Spanish about his mother (Cintron denies), and that set all the cogs in motion. Alex Cintron released a statement regarding the whole ordeal.

“I accept MLB’s suspension and will learn from this. Although I never referenced Ramon’s mother, my actions were inappropriate. I apologize for my part in Sunday’s unfortunate incident. As coaches, we are held to a higher standard and should be an example to the players. Hopefully, other coaches will learn from the mistake so that this never happens again in the future.”

A’s manager Bob Melvin spoke over a videocast about the incident. He reinforced the fact that the blame should not be placed just on Ramon Laureano, primarily because of the offensive words coming from the Astros’ dugout.

 

Photo Credit: Daily Tribune

Ramon doesn’t go over there unless something completely offensive came out of the dugout. I think the league will know who that is. That person should get suspended. Hopefully, that’s the case. Nowadays, without fans in the stands and mics everywhere, my guess is they know who it was.”

Just imagine if that footage with full audio were ever to get released. The Astros are already the most polarizing team in baseball, why not add some gasoline to that fire.

 

A Night On the Town… can cost you in Cleveland.

 

 

The Cleveland Indians have decided to option Zach Plesac, and Mike Clevinger to the team’s alternative training site, reported by ESPN’s Jeff Passan. They will be at the site for at least ten days according to rules by the MLB

Both pitchers were placed on the restricted list last week after MLB was notified by security that  Zach Plesac had not been following protocols, and left the hotel to socialize with friends. MLB immediately sent a car service to drive Plesac home so he wouldn’t risk other teammates, just in case of him contracting the virus.

 

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Photo Credit: NY Post

The messed up part was that Mike Clevenger didn’t disclose that he was with Plesac, remained silent, and actually traveled with his team. Plesac then posted a video (now removed) on his Instagram to “get out the truth” to fans about their situation.

Here are some key highlights from the video:

Plesac maintained his stance that he wasn’t wrong because he and Clevenger followed the CDC guidelines when they went out and were never with “more than eight people the entire night.” Plesac also stated that he and Clevenger were being cast as “bad teammates, bad people, and dragged across the mud.” Even though he didn’t deny that he broke protocol, Plesac said the news circling hasn’t been fair.

“The media is terrible, man. They do some evil things to create stories and make things sound better and make things sound worse.” 

“It breaks my heart for people to think I am a bad teammate or a bad person. But I wanted to share with you guys that moving forward, there’s a selfishness lesson taught here, and at the end of the day, I want everybody to be healthy. I want to be a good teammate. I want to win baseball games, man. That’s all I want to do.”

 

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Photo Credit: Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports

The disappointment across the Indians’ organization is quite clear, especially since this all happened on the cusp of the Chicago Cubs series. (The Cubs swept the Indians in such a decisive manner) Indians RHP Adam Plutko was bluntly honest when asked about his teammates.

“They hurt us bad. They lied to us. They sat here in front of you guys and publicly said things that they did not follow through on. So these ‘grown-ass men’ can sit here and tell you guys what happened and tell you guys what they’re gonna do to fix it. I don’t need to do that for them. I’ll let them sit here and tell you how they’re gonna earn their trust back. I don’t need to put words in their mouths.”

The truth is, even if they followed the guidelines, which no one is buying quite honestly, but let’s say they did; they agreed to all of this. These guidelines were written in the contracts that the MLBPA and MLB fought for months over. This baseball season is happening with those guidelines as the backbone of the operation. 

 

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Photo Credit: CBS Sports

What about Carlos Carrasco? He was diagnosed with Leukemia last year, and that makes him very high risk with the threat of the coronavirus. I’m sure that is common knowledge in the Indians’ clubhouse. The instant backlash from a player to stray from the herd, and in Clevenger’s case, possibly be a person to infect others can bring down a whole team. Look at the St. Louis Cardinals, who still haven’t played a game in August at the time of writing of this article.

Another week in baseball, another story to tell. It seems everything is so much more complicated away from the confines of the baseball park. All the outside interference drags the game down with a negative spin. I prefer the storylines of good versus evil (Home team against away team) I prefer players competing for the chance to go all the way, win the big one for their town.

 

 

These are the stories are that make baseball great. The season is still far from over, and every game continues to matter. Come back next week and let’s hope nobody decides to ruin it for the rest of us. 

 

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-Joshua Rushford – Franchise Sports Media

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