Here’s the basic summary, courtesy of MLB.com:
Manager Joe Girardi engaged in a brief shouting match with columnist Joel Sherman of the New York Post in the visiting clubhouse at Camden Yards, and the pair were separated by team personnel.
Girardi conducted his postgame press conference with reporters in a noisy hallway outside the clubhouse and was irked at having to answer repeated questions about CC Sabathia’s health, saying at one point, “I’m not lying. One time is sufficient.”
The spat between Girardi and Sherman continued into the manager’s office, where players overheard the exchange before Sherman exited and the door slammed shut behind him.
ESPN’s Andrew Marchand adds that the two were nose-to-nose at one point in the manager’s office.
Girardi’s frustration stemmed primarily from a blown call at first base that ended the game and stripped the Yankees of what would have been the tying run. This is all sounds like heat-of-the-moment stuff — the kind of thing that can happen in any ultra-competitive environment — but it’s sure to feed a range of narratives in New York. “Has Girardi lost his cool?” “Are the Yankees already panicking?” “Is this a sinking ship?”
The Bombers enter play Sunday in a tie with the Orioles for first place in the American League East.
The Rays lost 4-1 to the Yankees on Monday night, which clinched a postseason berth for the Athletics just as they began their own game against the Mariners. For the 94-62 A’s, it’s their first postseason appearance since 2014 when they lost the AL Wild Card game to the Royals.
Major League Baseball celebrated the Athletics’ achievement by tweeting this fact: The A’s are the first team since 1988 to make the postseason with baseball’s lowest Opening Day payroll ($66 million).
John J. Fisher, who has owned the A’s since 2005, has a net worth approaching $3 billion. The Athletics franchise is valued at over $1 billion. Yet the A’s have never had an Opening Day payroll at $90 million or above and have consistently been among the teams with the lowest payrolls. The cultural shift towards embracing analytics has allowed the A’s to get away with investing as little money as possible into the team. Moneyball helped change baseball’s zeitgeist such that many began to fetishize doing things on the cheap and now the league itself is embracing it.
What the fact MLB tweeted says is actually this: John J. Fisher was able to save a few bucks this year and the A’s still somehow made it to the postseason.
The Athletics’ success is due to a whole host of players, but particularly youngsters Matt Olson, Matt Chapman, Sean Manaea, Daniel Mengden, Lou Trivino, among others. All are pre-arbitration aside from Manaea. When it comes time to pay them something approaching what they’re actually worth, will the A’s reward them for their contributions or will they do what they’ve always done and cut bait? After reaching the postseason in 2014, the A’s traded away Josh Donaldson, Brandon Moss, Jeff Samardzija, and John Jaso. Each was a big influence on the club’s success. Athletics fans should be happy their favorite team has reached the postseason, but if the team’s history is any precedent, they shouldn’t get attached to any of the players. Is that really something Major League Baseball should be advocating?