A new rivalry brews in pretty much the most eventful & exciting April series one can ask forFollow @RoyalsBlue_com
This weekend’s series vs. the Oakland A’s was something, eh? What was supposed to be the bittersweet return of Billy Butler to Kansas City, became an ugly, hate fueled series in the top of the seventh inning of the opening game Friday night. With the score tied at 4 after a Stephen Vogt’s second home run off of starter Jeremy Guthrie (the third solo shot of the night against J-Guts), Kelvin Herrera enters the game to face A’s third baseman, Brett Lawrie. Lawrie hits the first pitch he sees, singling to right field. The next batter, Josh Reddick then hits a 3-1 pitch off of Herrera’s ankle, which deflects to Mike Moustakas coming in from third. Moustakas throws to Alcides Escobar covering second base for the force out on Lawrie. In this odd 1-5-6 putout attempt, there is simply no way on Earth Escobar is going to, or even attempt to, turn a double play. Coming into second base, Lawrie has zero focus on the bag and slides spikes high directly into Escobar’s left leg. Lawrie has to fully extend his left arm just to find second base after the “slide”. Lawrie was called out on the play, and after a review, the umpiring crew did not see enough evidence to overturn their call.
See for yourself:
A lot of people have defended the slide saying “that’s baseball”. All of those people are wrong. Even Royals long time broadcaster, Denny Mathews said that he “didn’t really have a problem with the slide” in Sunday’s broadcast on Fox Sports Midwest. Denny, I love you and what you mean to Kansas City, but that was an unnecessary hard slide. Lawrie may not have fully intended to injure Escobar, but he sure as hell didn’t try to avoid hurting him. In fact, had he slid into second base normally, he would have easily been safe.
Then things got really weird with Lawrie defending his actions and an ensuing he said/she said Apologate, saying things like “that’s baseball” and “Hope everyone knows I am playing this game hard. I am never trying to hurt anyone in any type of situation, I’m playing for my teammates.”
A player truly “playing for his teammates” knows he needs to be safe at second base, in scoring position, in the late innings of a tied game. But, the best part is his supposed “hearrfelt” text apology to Alcides Escobar, reported by A’s beat reporter Susan Slusser (more on her later), that Escobar didn’t receive. So, who’s lying?
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