Chicago White Sox closest Liam Hendriks rips ‘delusional’ Josh Donaldson for ‘Jackie’ comment to Tim Anderson

Chicago White Sox closest Liam Hendriks rips ‘delusional’ Josh Donaldson for ‘Jackie’ comment to Tim Anderson

Josh Donaldson says he was “joking” when he called Tim Anderson “Jackie,” but at least one Chicago White Sox member doesn’t accept the former MVP’s explanation.

“Usually you have jokes with people you get along with, not with people who don’t get along at all,” White Sox closer Liam Hendriks said on Sunday, a day after the trade between Donaldson and Anderson caused a bench clearing incident at Yankee. Stadium. “So that statement right there was complete bulls —.”

Donaldson admitted after Saturday’s game to calling Anderson “Jackie” – a nod to Jackie Robinson – in the first inning. The Yankees third baseman apologized, saying he meant no disrespect.

But Anderson, who is black, said on Saturday he was offended by Donaldson’s comment, calling it “disrespectful” and “unhelpful”. Hendriks echoed those sentiments on Sunday afternoon before the clubs kicked off a doubleheader.

“We in this clubhouse, we have [Anderson’s] back and everything – and it was just a completely unacceptable thing,” Hendriks said. “Again, [the Yankees] try to take it out as an inside joke – no, it’s horse s—. They don’t have that kind of stuff going on. …It’s like having a joke with a guy you’re a nemesis with, I guess you could say.

“But that’s not how it happened in this clubhouse, and I don’t understand how [Donaldson] never thought like that. It’s just insane.”

Donaldson, who is white, said the “Jackie” comment referred to a 2019 interview with Sports Illustrated in which Anderson described himself as feeling like “today’s Jackie Robinson” in the way he “gets to a point where I have to change the game.” Donaldson said it was a reference he had “joked” with Anderson about in the past.

Major League Baseball is looking into the matter and talking to all affected parties, a source told ESPN’s Alden Gonzalez. Yankees manager Aaron Boone said Sunday he doesn’t think Donaldson should have made the comment.

“I don’t believe there was any malicious intent in that regard,” Boone told reporters. “But you know, this is, just in my opinion, a place he shouldn’t go.”

White Sox manager Tony La Russa said on Saturday he thought Donaldson’s comment was “racist” and explained the situation a day later, telling reporters he was “curious” to see if the Yankees would resolve the incident.

“I’m actually curious to see what the Yankee organization is saying,” La Russa said. “What I’m saying here doesn’t really matter. I saw what Aaron said – he’s between a rock and a hard place there.”

Hendriks also said he hopes for an additional response from the Yankees as well.

“A few of our guys made sure a few guys in their clubhouse knew exactly what was going on,” Hendriks said. “So whether it’s an internal thing that has to happen on their side, today we show up and do what we came here to do – we have a chance to win two games at Yankee Stadium.”

Anderson was dropped from Chicago’s Game 1 lineup by La Russa, who said it “didn’t make sense” for the former AL batting champion to play both games of the doubleheader.

Donaldson dropped Anderson on May 13 in Chicago after putting a hard tag on the star White Sox shortstop, who responded with a push, which resulted in the benches and relievers clearing. Donaldson said on Saturday he was “trying to defuse” any lingering tension when the players crossed paths early in the game.

In the third inning, Donaldson had rounded second base after the final out and began chatting with Anderson as the teams exited the field. Donaldson was escorted off the field by Boone while Anderson was led away by third base coach Joe McEwing.

“[Donaldson] knew very well what he was doing,” Hendriks said. “He wanted it to be exactly what it was. He just didn’t intend the repercussions, which were quick.”

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