New York Yankees slugger Josh Donaldson is currently under investigation by Major League Baseball for comments he directed towards White Sox shortstop Tim Anderson during Saturday’s game at Yankee Stadium.
The benches cleared and White Sox manager Tony La Russa revealed in the aftermath that Donaldson made a racial remark directed at Anderson. Shortly thereafter, Anderson shared that Donaldson referred to him as “Jackie” as a call-back to 2019 when Anderson called himself the modern day Jackie Robinson for breaking the “fun barrier” and overcoming other racial obstacles that plague the sport.
Donaldson said he’s called Anderson “Jackie” in the past and that Anderson didn’t take exception to it. That wasn’t the case on Sunday.
Donaldson insisted he didn’t have malicious intent, which might be true. At the end of the day, though, the former AL MVP shouldn’t have said anything. Now, he faces a potential suspension and is taking heat from fans, the media and Anderson’s teammates.
Prior to the first leg of Sunday’s make-up doubleheader, White Sox closer Liam Hendriks weighed in and didn’t pull any punches.
That would almost be an understatement, as Hendriks went scorched earth on Donaldson.
White Sox closer Liam Hendriks blasted Yankees 3B Josh Donaldson over his controversial Tim Anderson remarks.
As you can see, Hendriks took serious issue with Donaldson’s explanation, calling it “completely inappropriate,” among other cuss words. The two-time All-Star took things a step further by eviscerating Donaldson’s character and alleging he wasn’t the most popular player in his former locker rooms.
"“ . . . But, then again, my feelings toward the individual in question are pretty well documented that we don’t get along. I’ve now spoken to, I think it’s four separate clubhouses that he’s been into and, as a whole, none of ’em got along.”"
These are certainly strong words from Hendriks, who, like Anderson, has a history with Donaldson. There’s no way to confirm his assertions about Donaldson, but the two did play together on the Blue Jays back in 2015. Before that, Donaldson was in Oakland, which is where Hendriks played from 2016-20 before he signed with the White Sox as a free agent before the 2021 campaign.
Hendriks is on the record saying he is “not a Donaldson fan” and that the now-Yankees third baseman’s personality “turned many teammates into enemies.” Make of that what you will, but Hendriks and Donaldson have both shared a clubhouse for a full year and have plenty of teammates in common.
That history certainly fueled Hendriks’ profanity-laced tired against Donaldson, but we’re not going to bash the guy for defending Anderson, who called Donaldson’s comment “disrespectful” and “unnecessary” after the game.
This story isn’t going anywhere, folks. Donaldson was clearly in the wrong and admitted as such after Saturday’s win, which is better than if he’d doubled down or gotten defensive, even if his explanation left a lot to be desired.
While Anderson was a late scratch for Sunday’s Game1, Donaldson is in the lineup, so we’ll know soon enough if Chicago has any retribution in store for Donaldson. In the slim chance Hendriks were to face Donaldson at any point Sunday, you can probably envision how that at-bat will unfold.