Things got heated between the Toronto Blue Jays and Braves earlier this week. Both teams showed up to play ball, but there was much more than just baseball that ended up being played. In their Wednesday game, there were two incidents that led to the benches being cleared.
Fortunately no punches were thrown, but there is a downside. There is one particular player on the Blue Jays roster that is going to remember that game for a while. His actions turned out to be costly for his team.
One of the incident occurred when Jose Bautista flipped his bat, and starred down an Atlanta pitcher after sending a baseball flying into the stands for a home-run. Another one involved Kevin Pillar from the Blue Jays. After he struck out swinging against Braves pitcher, Jason Motte, Pillar did not turn around quietly and go back to the dugout.
Pillar handled things in a different way. He got verbal towards Motte, too verbal. Toronto’s center fielder yelled anti-gay slurs at the Braves pitcher. That did not sit too well with the front office. He is in some hot water.
In the incident, Pillar claimed at the time he was angry because he thought Motte quick-pitched him. That is why he yelled at the Braves pitcher. Whether or not Motte did that, his actions will not be excused.
It is an incident that Pillar will have a lot of time to sit and think about over the next few days. Pillar will not be going unpunished. He was just issued a two-game suspension for using homophobic slurs at the Braves after the MLB conducted an investigation, according to The New York Times.
Pillar did step up and apologize after the game. He also said that he was completely and utterly embarrassed. His apology will not be saving him from a two game ban. Now Pillar and the Toronto Blue Jays will be paying the price for his bad choice of words.
The Blue Jays cent-fielder told reporters recently “I regret saying it.” He continued to say, “I’m going to use myself as an example of how there are words out there you can’t use. It’s not a word I use ever.”
In addition to the Blue Jays losing the game in which tensions got high between the Braves, an 8-4 loss will not be the only loss they suffer this week. They will be losing Pillar for a pair of games. On the bright side, it could be viewed as a learning experience for Pillar.
Toronto is a losing team overall this season. They sit at the bottom of the standings of the AL East, with a record of 18-24. They have the most losses of the entire American League.
Will Pillar learn from his mistakes? Is a two-game ban an effective way for the Toronto Blue Jays’ outfielder to learn his lesson? Share your thoughts in the comments below.
Commentary By Cody Macleod