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Thursday, July 18, 2019

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Manny Machado hints MLB treats him differently due to his ethnicity

Manny Machado

Manny Machado has been following the situation with Jake Marisnick closely, and the San Diego Padres slugger is confident he would have been treated much, much differently if it were him who barreled into Los Angeles Angels catcher Jonathan Lucroy at home plate.

Marisnick slammed into Lucroy in a collision at home plate when the Angels played the Houston Astros on July 7. Lucroy was left with a concussion and a fractured nose, and Marisnick is currently appealing the two-game suspension he received from Major League Baseball. Machado shared some of his thoughts on the situation in a rant on Instagram live Tuesday night, and he said he would have been suspended 20 games if he did what Marisnick did to Lucroy.

That was only part of Machado’s rant, which was primarily aimed at MLB Network broadcasters Eric Byrnes and Dan Plesac. Byrnes and Plesac defended Marisnick, and Machado said they did that because they have to “protect their guy.” He also called them the “biggest tools out there.”

Marisnick was booed by Angels fans during his at-bats in Los Angeles on Tuesday night. Then in the sixth inning, Angels reliever Noe Ramirez hit Marisnick in the back with a pitch that was thrown up around his head. That resulted in the benches and bullpens clearing.

Machado believes Byrnes and Plesac would have said he deserved to have a pitch thrown at his head if he plowed into Lucroy. He also made reference to his recent one-game suspension for arguing balls and strikes.

“Other people do the same, they just get a slap on the wrist,” Machado said. “It’s all good. I just want people out there to understand where we come from, understand what it really is. Don’t listen to these guys on TV. … Latinos have to stick together all day.”

Machado seemed to be implying that he is treated differently by MLB officials, broadcasters and analysts because of his ethnicity. Some would argue that he has brought a lot of the criticism on himself with his dirty play.

H/T New York Post

David Price doubles down on ‘trash’ Dennis Eckersley criticism

David Price

Boston Red Sox pitcher David Price has a long-running feud with broadcaster Dennis Eckersley that keeps getting dragged to the forefront.

Eckersley and Price infamously had a heated exchange on a team flight in 2017, but never spoke to clear up the incident. In a Boston Globe feature released this week, Eckersley said he “[doesn’t] plan on seeing him, never” and has no intention of apologizing.

Price gave a brief response on Twitter, but really doubled down Wednesday when asked by reporters.

In other words, Price is saying that it’s a good indication of Eckersley’s character that so few teammates were willing to speak on his behalf during a special about his career.

Price went on to defend Toronto Blue Jays pitcher Marcus Stroman, whose antics Eckersley called “tired” in June.

This feud had largely been relegated to the backburner, and probably will be again in the coming days. The bad blood, however, is still as strong as it always was.

Anthony Davis has no regrets about in-season trade demand

Anthony Davis Lakers

Anthony Davis took a bit of a reputation hit when he publicly demanded that the New Orleans Pelicans trade him last season, but he has no regrets over the way he handled the situation.

One of the questions Davis was asked in a recent interview with ESPN’s Rachel Nichols was if he wishes he did anything differently when informing the Pelicans that he wanted out. He did not hesitate with his response, which you can see at about the 1:35 mark below.

“No, I wish I did it the way I did it,” he said. “I love the city of New Orleans, but from a professional standpoint I felt like it was time for me to move on.”

Davis added that the trade demand was about taking control of his own career and finally making his own decisions.

“I allowed people to tell me what to do and advise me to do things, and I’d think, ‘Alright, they’re looking out for me,'” he said. “Now, by me being able to take control of my career, any decision I make I can sleep at night. That’s the biggest thing for me.”

As for the timing, Davis claimed he felt it was appropriate since he was not planning to sign an extension with the Pelicans and wanted to give them an opportunity to get as much in return for him as possible. That would make more sense if he didn’t take the trade demand public, as that stripped the team of most of its leverage.

In the end, Davis ultimately got what he wanted. We saw a glimpse over the weekend of just how excited he is to be a Laker, so it’s no surprise he has no regrets over the way things unfolded.

Nick Saban shares thoughts on idea he is difficult to work for

Nick Saban

Nick Saban is a hard-nosed coach who expects a lot from both his players and assistant coaches, and that is the main reason many have said he is difficult to work for. If that’s what it takes to achieve greatness, the six-time national champion has no problem with that reputation.

While meeting with reporters at SEC Media Days on Wednesday, Saban was asked if all the turnover on his coaching staff is a reflection of him being tough to work for. He said he finds it ironic that people say that and then coach their own programs with a similar style to his.

“You have to ask some of the people that work for me,” he said. “Always interesting that, you know, they may say that, but then when they get a job and they go do it, they do it exactly like we did it. So, I don’t know.

Saban noted how recruiting has become a 24/7 ordeal, and he said no part of the job with being a college coach is easy. He also explained how he tries to hold members of his staff accountable and to a high standard, which sometimes means doing things they don’t want to do. He compared having assistant coaches to raising children.

“So you have to make a choice and decision: You want to do it right, or you want to make everybody happy? No different than raising your children,” he said. “I go through this with (my wife) Terry when we’re raising our kids. She wanted to make them happy, and I wanted to make them do right.”

While his leadership style may not be for everyone, there’s no denying Saban has helped countless coaches advance their careers. Even someone like Lane Kiffin — who takes swipes at Saban any chance he gets — understands how much working for the Alabama legend helped him. That’s the trade-off when you work under him.

Lincoln Riley: Oklahoma offense won’t dip even without Kyler Murray

Lincoln Riley

The Oklahoma Sooners have had back-to-back Heisman Trophy winners at quarterback, so it would only be logical to expect the offense to dip a bit. Lincoln Riley does not believe that will be the case, though.

Riley said he doesn’t anticipate any regression from the Oklahoma offense in 2019, adding that he expects the defense to improve as well.

We shouldn’t expect Riley to say anything negative about his offense publicly. Plus, he has an experienced quarterback in Jalen Hurts waiting to follow up Baker Mayfield and Kyler Murray, though Hurts will have to win the job in a competition.

The Sooners led the nation in scoring last year with 48.4 points per game. That will be a tough act to follow no matter who’s under center, but Riley isn’t backing down from the challenge.