By: Joey Segur
A big controversial event happened in the Toronto Blue Jay’s and Texas Rangers game today as it seemed that Jose Bautista intentionally slid late into 2nd base almost taking out Rangers Rougned Odor. With some quick reaction and nifty feet work Odor dodged the potential devastating slide and the ball he threw to first base to try to get the double play sailed far off to the right side of the bag. What happened next will be talked about for a long time as Odor threw a massive punch into Bautista’s jaw starting an all out benches clearing brawl.
Lets take a trip back in time to game two of the NLDS where the Mets and Dodgers were facing off and Chase Utley would forever change how players would slide into 2nd base. In an apparent late and very outside slide to break up a double play Chase Utley ran into Ruben Tejada breaking his leg and ending his season and playoff run with the Mets. Fans erupted calling Utley’s slide a very dirty play and thus came the new sliding rule in which Jose Bautista clearly broke in the game today.
Now comes the big debate. Obviously you would expect suspensions to be handed out to both Bautista for his illegal slide and Odor for his monster punch to the face, but who deserves the big suspension? On one hand you have Bautista who intentionally tried to take out a player by sliding late and potentially could have ended Odors young season for the Rangers. If you didn’t know Bautista is a very large man and Odor not so much, so with that in play the injury could have been brutal for the young Odor. The other side is Odor who instantly became very aggressive and clocked Bautista hard in the face which could have ended Bautista on the DL with a broken jaw. So how does one determine who gets the bigger punishment?
In my opinion they both should at least get a 2-3 month suspension with no pay to show major league players and fans that they take this type of event really seriously, I mean this is a topic of player safety. So what do you all think? Who do you think is in the wrong and do you think there will be retaliation in future match-ups between the Blue Jays and Rangers?