Houston Astros shortstop Carlos Correa (1) and second baseman Jose Altuve (27) celebrate Correa's two-run home run that drove in Altuve during the first inning of Game 1 of the ALDS at Minute Maid Park on Friday, Oct. 6, 2017, in Houston. ( Brett Coomer / Houston Chronicle )
BRONX, N.Y. — The Houston Astros botched public relations tour continued on full display Saturday. First, it was new manager Dusty Baker urging MLB to step in and stop any “premeditated retaliation,” against the Astros. I get it, Dusty is doing what he’s supposed to and trying to protect his guys. Good luck with that.
Dusty Baker is concerned about “premeditated retaliation” against the Astros. He wants league to step in. pic.twitter.com/GSFaHJhX9d
Secondly, shortstop Carlos Correa keeps chirping, telling The Athletic’s Ken Rosenthal that Jose Altuve didn’t cheat and didn’t want his shirt ripped off because of a terrible looking unfinished tattoo on his collar bone. Correa also said Altuve didn’t use the trash can system (yeah, probably because he was employing a buzzer).
Then Correa blasted Cody Bellinger, saying he should, “be informed before you talk about other players,” and “if you don’t know the facts, then you’ve got to shut the f–k up.” Stay classy Carlos.
What’s funny about all of this is pictures are emerging from Instagram in 2019 where Altuve has no visible tattoo. Plus, it’s pretty galling to hear Correa tell other players to shut up unless they have the facts when the Astros have essentially been stonewalling everyone in the media and around the game. If you want the facts out there, stop whining and denying and start talking some truth!
Carlos Correa says Altuve didn’t want jersey ripped off because of a tattoo on his collarbone. The internet remains undefeated pic.twitter.com/LNxWiiTOGH
Circling back around to Baker’s comments, if the Astros didn’t do anything wrong and don’t have anything to hide, they shouldn’t have anything to worry about. Right?
Another way to keep his players safe, have them take their medicine. If MLB would suspend the implicated players for 90 games and the postseason, it would send a message of accountability to the rest of the sport. Maybe they still get hit eventually but at least the message is sent that the league is willing to hold them accountable.
If they don’t, how then can MLB suspend players for reacting, retaliating and plunking Astros players in response to something that baseball didn’t hold them accountable for in the first place? A lot more drama (and bench clearing brawls) could be avoided if MLB would simply not let this issue linger longer. If MLB doesn’t want to police the sport, 29 other teams will.