Gabe Lacques of USA TODAY Sports reports that Major League Baseball is investigating Blue Jays outfielder Kevin Pillar‘s use of a homophobic slur directed at Braves reliever Jason Motte on Wednesday night. Motte quick-pitched Pillar, which the latter did not like. After Pillar struck out, he yelled the slur at Motte.
Pillar did apologize to Motte later. Speaking to the media after Wednesday’s loss, he said, “It was immature, it was stupid, it was uncalled for. It’s part of the game, it’s just, I’m a competitive guy and heat of the moment. Obviously I’m going to do whatever I’ve got to do to reach out and apologize and let him know he didn’t do anything wrong, it was all me.”
Good on Pillar for doing the right thing afterwards, but Major League Baseball is right to investigate the incident because hateful language has no place in the game.
The benches actually cleared twice during Wednesday’s game: after Pillar and Motte’s tiff in the seventh inning, and after Jose Bautista hit a home run in the eighth. Bautista stared at his homer, then at reliever Eric O'Flaherty before flipping his bat demonstratively.
Somewhat related: Nationals pitcher Matt Albers appeared to shout a homophobic slur after closing out his team’s win over the Phillies on Sunday. Perhaps MLB should look into that, too.
Last night in the top of the eighth inning of the Dodgers-Cubs game, Curtis Granderson struck out. Or, at the very least, he should’ve. After the game, the umpire who said he didn’t admitted he screwed up.
While trying to squelch a Dodgers comeback, Wade Davis got Granderson into a 2-2 count. Davis threw his pitch, Granderson whiffed on it, it hit the dirt, and Willson Contreras applied the tag for the out. End of the inning, right? Wrong: Granderson argued to home plate umpire Jim Wolf that he made slight contact with the ball, Wolf, after conferring with the other umps agreed, and Granderson lived to see another pitch.
Before he’d see that pitch, Joe Maddon came out to argue the call and got so agitated about it all he was ejected for the second time in this series. He was right to argue:
It all ended up not mattering, of course, because Granderson struck out eventually anyway.
Normally such things end there, but after the game a reporter got to Wolf and Wolf did something umpires don’t often do: he admitted he blew the call:
It’s good that the bad call ended up not affecting anything. But the part of me who likes to stir up crap and watch chaos rule in baseball really kinda wishes that Granderson had hit a series-clinching homer right after that. At least as long as it didn’t result in Cubs fans burning Chicago to the ground.