In spring training, when the revelations were new and the shots were fresh, the Los Angeles Dodgers’ pitcher pitcher Alex Wood made a prophetic point when considering retaliation against the Houston Astros hitter this season.
“Someone will take matters into their own hands,” Wood said, “and they’ll get more suspension than any of those guys got for the biggest cheating scandal in 100 years.”
Five months later, after an incomprehensible set of circumstances that forced the Dodgers to face the Astros at the empty Minute Maid Park in Houston, Wood’s teammate fell victim to a brutal irony caused by Major League Baseball’s decision to grant immunity to the main culprits in a scandal that stole signs.
Joe Kelly was suspended eight games on Tuesday for his actions, although he didn̵7;t hit anyone – with his fist or baseball – and was never fired. The penalty seems to be extremely severe when measured in the context of the 60-game season. Eight games is more than 13% of that and corresponds to the suspension of 22 games in a season of 162 games.
In the last 10 years, no player has been suspended for more than 20 games for non-performance-related offenses, recreational drugs, substance abuse, domestic violence or, in the case of Juan Carlos Oviedo, identity fraud,
When punishing Kelly, MLB referred to fastball at 3-0.96 km / h behind Alex Bregman’s head (Astros leader Dusty Baker was sure it was intentional) and ridicule towards Carlos Corre (Baker said Kelly was shouting: ” Nice swing, b– – “). MLB also referred to previous suspensions regarding” intentional throwing “, specifically the incident in April 2018, when Kelly was suspended from six games aimed at looting and fighting New York Yankees striker Tyler Austin. In other words, Kelly then got two games less – almost three times longer in the season – for an incident that caused much more violence.
Dodgers pitcher Joe Kelly dusted Alex Bregman off the plate, and when Kelly hit Carlos Correa, both words were exchanged as the Astros and Dodgers bench cleared up.
Another main reason was not mentioned in the MLB edition, but it was obvious to practically everyone. It was about what led Kelly’s actions: players from both teams spilled onto the pitch, gathered en masse, some without masks, just one day after the Miami Marlins experienced a COVID-19 outbreak that struck a logistical nightmare for so many people. like five teams.
Dodgers manager Dave Roberts, who was suspended for a game and immediately served it, spoke to league officials Wednesday morning, saying they were “not pleased” that the strict protocols of their 100-plus-page operations manual had been largely ignored because of adrenaline. . .
“We’re under a microscope,” Roberts said, “what we should be.”
The biggest source of public anger at Dodgers’ stance on Astros – apart from the overwhelming sense of cheating in the 2017 World Series – was the lack of punishment for players for what was clearly a player-driven system. MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred explained that he needed to offer immunity in exchange for open, honest testimony and that it would be too difficult to impose penalties for offenses committed in secret clubhouses.
But the Dodgers – and countless others around the league – were unfair in a greater context of enthusiasm.
The fact that one of their most important bull pieces was hit with such severe punishment for – allegedly – a response to a baseball crime that some others believe they are “worse than steroids” has probably deepened the Dodger’s wrath.
However, Kelly is suddenly a folk hero in LA after being malignant last season to the same unbalanced heights that it all caused. A popular group of fans, the Dodgers Nation, have already pushed T-shirts that celebrate Kelly’s facial narrowing. The Fox Theater in Bakersfield, California wrote “Thank you Joe Kelly” for his tent. Players such as Los Angeles Angels relief Keynan Middleton and New York Mets starter Marcus Stroman have expressed their support for social media and provided further evidence that the rest of the league still perceives Astros with indignation.
Kelly informed the league on Wednesday afternoon that he would appeal against his suspension, but was not needed later that night. Eight more substitutes allowed one undeserved match in 9 innings 3/3, sweeping the Dodgers in a series of two games.
Edwin Rios, a newcomer to the corner infielder, who won the 13th lead during the home run, was asked if he felt more intense with his teammates in this series.
“A thousand percent.”