Derek Norris has learned nothing from his domestic violence suspension

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Last year, then-Tampa Bay Ray catcher Derek Norris’ ex-fiancee alleged that Norris assaulted her. Her claim: after she found Norris on the phone with another woman, Norris approached her from behind and put her in a choke hold. When she tried to get away, he grabbed her by the back of her hair to pull her back to him and then held her by her upper arms.

Norris denied the assault took place, but Major League Baseball interviewed his fiancee and, on September 1, suspended Norris for the remainder of the season. Since he had already been released by then and was a free agent, the suspension was more symbolic than substantive, but you’d think it would at least be cause for reflection for the guy. Nah: Norris continued to stand by his denial even after his suspension.

It seems he’s still of that attitude, because this is what Norris, who now plays for the Tigers, had to say about it this morning:

In addition to Norris’ apparent belief that he is the victim in all of this — the guy who has to overcome adversity and misguided public opinion — “whatever doesn’t kill you” is quite a turn of phrase from a man who was credibly accused of choking a woman.

What’s more, his whole attitude is kind of odd given that, I am certain, his new employer, the Tigers, had a heart-to-heart about all of this when the signed him, making sure that their new catcher understood the gravity of his situation and appreciated the fresh start he received:

Or, I guess not.

You know, the Tigers lost 98 games last year, got substantially worse in the offseason and are clear that they are not in contention mode. You’d think if there ever was a time to make a point of not signing a guy because of character reasons, now would be a good time. Instead, at least if Norris is to be believed, they glossed right over the biggest item on his CV and are now trotting out a guy who has no apparent remorse or even reflection about what he did and what has happened to him in the past year.

Blue Jays clinch playoff berth with Orioles’ loss to Red Sox

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TORONTO — The Blue Jays clinched a postseason berth Thursday without taking the field.

Toronto was assured of an AL wild card berth when the Boston Red Sox beat the Baltimore Orioles 5-3.

If Toronto holds its current position as the first of the AL’s three wild cards, the Blue Jays would open a best-of-three wild-card series at Rogers Centre next week.

“These guys are excited to be in this position,” Blue Jays manager John Schneider said after Wednesday’s 8-3 loss to the New York Yankees. “You’ve got three really good pitchers lined up against a good Boston team, playing at home. So I think it’s more excitement more than it’s nerves or anything. I think the guys are going to come out and be ready to roll on Friday night.”

Toronto became the fourth AL team to clinch a playoff berth, joining division champions Houston, the Yankees and Cleveland. The Astros and Yankees have first-round byes.

The Blue Jays last went to the playoffs in 2020, when they were knocked out with two straight losses to Tampa Bay.

Eight of the 12 berths in the expanded postseason have been clinched: The Los Angeles Dodgers and St. Louis earned division titles, and Atlanta and the New York Mets are assured no worse the wild cards while still competing to win the NL East. The Dodgers have a first-round bye.