Should the epic Javy Baez walk off against Amir Garrett and the Reds result in a suspension for the Cubs star?
It was more than just a moonshot single that won the game for Chicago, it was another chapter in an ongoing feud between two players showing no signs of giving ground anytime soon.
The moment was cool enough on its own without the brutal context of the feud. Baez stepped up to the plate in a pinch-hit appearance with the bases loaded in the bottom of the ninth inning. He cracked a deep single that soared over the heads of the Reds outfielders, driving in the winning run.
This is where things start to go off the rails.
Baez didn’t run to first base. Instead, he stood in the batter’s box and admired his hit before slow-walking to first base while yelling profanities at Reds pitcher Amir Garrett. At one point he began making a gesture with his bat — which he carried most of the way to first before launching it in the air — and lifted his uniform up.
This was more than a walk-off, and MLB might want to step in to simmer the rage between Chicago and Cincinnati before it boils over.
Javy Baez vs Amir Garrett: Should MLB step in with suspensions?
Nothing outwardly suspension-worthy happened during Monday night’s epic walk-off. The testosterone was no doubt pumping, but the only benches that cleared were on the Chicago side as they celebrated Baez winning the game.
They also were probably stepping in to prevent him from doing anything he’d regret, but the argument could be made that he’d already crossed that line.
Baez and Garrett have a history that goes back a few seasons. The most recent chapter of their feud was written back in May, when Garrett yelled from the mound at Anthony Rizzo while he sat in the Cubs dugout. Baez took exception to this, leaving the dugout and approaching Garrett on the mound in a rage.
MLB somehow didn’t suspend Baez for this, rather fined him as punishment. It did little to simmer the feud, though, as Monday night was proof that there’s still plenty of bad blood flowing on all sides. Baez and the Cubs got the laugh this time, but the answer could be a fastball high and inside the next time around.
Yes, Baez should be suspended for a game or two. But so too should Garrett.
It’d be incredibly lame to do it, but if the league steps in and issues suspensions for Baez and Garrett, it could go a long way in calming things down. Baez arguably deserves a suspension after his antics further escalated the feud, but only suspending him puts the Reds back in danger of retaliation from the Cubs.
We all love a good sports beef, and baseball is always good for a few. This is not a case of trying to take the fun out of baseball, we’ve gone far beyond that point with this feud. There comes a point where things go too far and MLB has a chance to stop this before it becomes too late.