Oh boy. Oh no. Players talking to each other in the dugout? In animated fashion? This calls for an emergency New York Yankees spring training press conference. Gather ’round, folks.
On Saturday, during the Yankees’ spring matchup against the Blue Jays, the cameras caught Gerrit Cole and Josh Donaldson talking while watching the action. Why is this anything of note? Because Donaldson called out Cole last year for his “spin rates” and alleged the right-hander used sticky stuff, causing what felt like unnecessary drama regarding an obvious league-wide issue.
It also made Yankees fans hate the polarizing third baseman even more than they already did (dating back to his days with the Blue Jays), further fueling the “Yankees vs MLB” narrative that continues to be a prominent discussion every year.
And then … and then! General manager Brian Cashman brought Donaldson in via trade this offseason in a blockbuster deal with the Twins that saw Gary Sánchez and Gio Urshela to Minnesota. Initially, the move was questioned due to the whole “team chemistry” aspect of it.
But apparently Cole and Donaldson had a “productive” conversation and are on the same page about the ultimate goal: winning a World Series.
How’s that going so far? Well, hopefully good, but it’s not entirely clear. Donaldson was seen speaking to a less-than-interested Cole on Saturday and … the pitcher might’ve been annoyed? You tell us.
Yankees fans react to Josh Donaldson and Gerrit Cole talking in the dugout
“No, Josh, I don’t want your theory on the series finale of The Sopranos. Or Joe Biden’s handling of foreign policy. And if you make a ‘sticky stuff’ joke, I’ll dump a can of Spider Tack into your cup.”
If we’re to make an educated guess on Cole’s preference with those he likes to hang out with, it appears he likes the more reserved crowd. He was good pals with Masahiro Tanaka before the right-hander left to return to Japan. He’s famously close with teammate Jameson Taillon dating back to their Pirates days.
But remember his UCLA career with Trevor Bauer? The two reportedly didn’t get along … and it’s obvious why. Bauer is a loud, in-your-face chatterbox whereas Cole likes focusing on what’s in front of him without the excess noise — again, if we’re to appropriately assess his demeanor based on what we’ve seen the last two years.
Donaldson, though? He’s definitely closer to Bauer on that personality spectrum as a more boisterous figure. And if Brett Gardner reportedly got under Cole’s skin, then this year is going to be quite the ride.
And then there’s Jordan Montgomery at the bottom of the frame spitting seeds without a care in the world. Picture perfect.
With Cole taking the bump on Sunday, maybe Donaldson was prepping him for his spring training debut to get him ahead of the adversity curve (since now Cole’s late debut is fueling more nonsensical discourse). In the end, this is just funny clip that we can sit here joking about until there’s a real report of discord in the clubhouse between these two. Then we will officially not be having a good time.