Anthony Rizzo rests after collision with Tatis
In a collision at first base on Sunday between Fernando Tatis Jr and Anthony Rizzo, the first baseman was injured and will not play against the Mariners.
There was nothing dirty about the play. It is important to say that, particularly in this day and age where social media is awash with armchair warriors who never played the game and who barely grasp the rules but see cheats and conspiracy at every turn.
Nobody did anything wrong. It was just baseball.
In Sunday’s game between the Yankees and the Padres, it was a perfect strike-em-out-throw-em-out double play, when Xander Bogaerts whiffed at strike three and catcher Kyle HIgashioka caught Tatis napping at first with a back pick.
In applying the tag, Rizzo’s head got tangled up with Tatis’ hip, leading the first baseman to leave the game with neck pain.
Social media being what it is, and given that this is the Yankees we are talking about, the cries of foul play reached immediate fever pitch. Tatis was criticised for not sliding, accused of purposely trying to hurt Rizzo, and everything else besides.
Of course, none of that is true. The play was clean, there was no intention by anyone to do anything other than play baseball. Tatis does not have to slide and in fact sliding would have been the wrong thing to do in that situation. Rizzo made a great play and unfortunately got hurt in the process.
Now that we can lay that to rest, the real focus is on the future. How is Rizzo?
Well, the Yankees have decided to sit him out of the series opener against the Seattle Mariners.
“Rizzo’s good. We’re just being cautious there,” said Yankees manager Aaron Boone. With a day’s rest and DJ LeMahieu on first base, the Yankees are hoping that they will get out of this with minimal damage. They can’t afford to lose Rizzo at this point in the season. The first baseman is hitting .304 and has 11 home runs and 32 RBIs this season.
Rizzo isn’t the only starter out against the Mariners, as rookie sensation Anthony Volpe was sat in favor of Isaiah Kiner-Falefa after slumping over the last few games.