An umpire ejected two Major League Baseball players—Kutter Crawford of the Boston Red Sox and Matt Strahm of the Philadelphia Phillies from the game at Citizens Bank Park field on Saturday. The two pitchers now face potentially hefty fines.
Strahm and Crawford, friends and former teammates, entered the field with no mischievous plan in mind — the adolescent incident occurred after the singing of the Star Spangled Banner.
According to an MLB tradition that some hold dear — it is a mark of patriotism and honor to be the last player off the field after the presentation of the patriotic song. And so, when the two men happened to be among the last to walk off the field, they both paused and a kind of standoff ensued.
The Daily Wire noted that the two “intently [stared] at each other,” goading each other into an ill-advised game of “chicken” to see who would move first.
“Zero of it was planned,” Strahm told WEEI’s Rob Bradford. “Just, [as the] anthem was over, and I looked across, and Kutter kind of gave me a grin, and I knew exactly what that grin meant, so [I] just stood there.”
“If you know me, you know competition is everything to me,” Strahm continued, “so [I] kind of felt like I was being called out right there.”
In a word of advice to those considering following his example, Strahm said, “Looking back on it, ‘probably not the wisest decision I’ve made in my big-league career.”
Red Sox Manager Alex Cora was not amused and noted that both players ignored orders to get off the field.
“[The umpire] gave them a warning,” Cora said, “and they stayed there and they got thrown out of the game. Both of them.”
In Major League Baseball, fines accompany ejections from a game. The amount of those fines is discretionary but generally higher if the ejected player is on the “injured list,” which Crawford was due to a strained hamstring.
Cora noted: “If you get thrown out, and you’re on the IL, you get crushed.”
League officials have yet to announce the amounts of the fines. With a hint of a smile, Cora predicted that if the fine were steep, Crawford, who makes a modest salary for an MLB pitcher, would be assisted by teammate Chris Sale, a fellow Florida Gulf Coast University alum who reportedly earns $29,000,000 a year.
Of the fines, Cora said: “It’s a big one because you’re on the IL. I know there’s a guy that went to the same school as him that’s probably going to take care of that.”
Scroll down to leave a comment and share your thoughts.