Nationals outfielder Juan Soto went 2-for-4 with a walk, two homers, and four RBI in Wednesday night’s 5-4 win over the Yankees. As MLB.com’s Jamal Collier notes, Soto (19 years, 231 days) is the youngest player to have a multi-homer game since the Braves’ Andruw Jones (19 years, 121 days) hit a pair of homers in a 3-2, 13-inning loss against the Reds on August 22, 1996.
Here are videos of Soto’s blasts. The first one was a three-run shot that barely went over the fence in left field at Yankee Stadium, giving the Nationals a 4-3 lead in the top of the fourth. The second was a no-doubt solo shot to right-center that broke a 4-4 tie in the top of the seventh.
After Wednesday’s performance, Soto is batting an outstanding .344/.447/.641 with five home runs, 12 RBI, and 14 runs scored in 76 plate appearances.
Last year, Cubs shortstop Addison Russell‘s wife Melisa made an Instagram post in which she accused her husband of cheating on her. Melisa’s friend added a comment in which she alleged Addison had been physically abusive towards Melisa. Addison denied the allegations. Major League Baseball started an investigation, but Melisa chose not to cooperate. Addison was not punished and the issue mostly went away.
On Wednesday, Melisa posted on her WordPress blog, which is linked on her Instagram with over 44,000 followers. In the post, Melisa details years of emotional, verbal, and physical abuse from Addison. Addison’s behavior, as detailed by Melisa, checks many of the boxes listed by The National Domestic Violence Hotline. As the abuse went on, Melisa says she suffered from depression. Eventually, she filed for divorce and began to regain control of her life, ultimately gaining the courage to come forward with what she had been through.
Read Melisa’s post if you want to know the full details of what went on. The details may be triggering for those of you who have also suffered abuse or are sensitive to the idea.
The Cubs and Major League Baseball should attempt to speak with Melisa to develop a strategy moving forward. Melisa may not cooperate again, which is her right and would not in any way diminish her allegations. If Melssa agrees, the Cubs should suspend Russell immediately and indefinitely. Failing that, Major League Baseball should suspend Russell immediately and indefinitely.
Victims of abuse, usually cisgender women and transgender people, have nothing material to gain by coming forward with allegations, particularly against someone in the public spotlight with legions of fans who will defend their favorite player to an unhealthy degree. Those who do come forward with details of their abuse should be given the benefit of the doubt and applauded for their courage.