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White Sox: La Russa Disapproving of Mercedes’ 3-0 Home Run vs. Twins

The White Sox manager didn’t approve of his slugger’s decision to swing through a 3-0 take sign in the latter stages of a blowout, citing citing a lack of sportsmanship and respect as additional gripes.

Tony La Russa White Sox
Photo: MLB.com

The Chicago White Sox put a beating on the Minnesota Twins on Monday night, winning the series opener by a score of 16-4.

In the top of the ninth inning, Yermin Mercedes clobbered a pitch off of position player Willians Astudillo that traveled over the fence for a home run. The 47-mph pitch came on a 3-0 count while the Sox were up 15-4.

Before the second game of the series in Minnesota, White Sox manager Tony La Russa spoke about the situation and explained that he disagreed with Mercedes swinging on the pitch, stating that the righty slugger swung through a take sign. La Russa elaborated on his disapproval of the sequence, citing a lack of sportsmanship and respect as additional gripes beyond the ignored sign. He apologized to the Twins and said that it would not happen again. La Russa added that Mercedes would be facing consequences within the White Sox ‘family’.

La Russa’s dialogue clashes with the popular opinion among baseball fans and media. Most are in favor of playing the game out to the fullest and enjoy the oddities that can result from position players pitching in blowout scenarios. In fact, after the game on Monday, White Sox legend Frank Thomas and former World Series manager Ozzie Guillen both stated they enjoyed the home run and didn’t find any issue with what Mercedes did.

In this ever-changing era of baseball, should unwritten rules like taking a 3-0 pitch in a similar situation exist? Most would probably answer no, but La Russa clearly sides on the contrary.


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1 year ago

[…] La Russa singled out 28-year-old slugger Yermín Mercedes for hitting a home run on a 3-0 count against a position […]

Abe
Abe
1 year ago

Mr. La Russa is wrong. Respect? How about respecting the fans who paid good money to see their favorite players go all out? You think the fans came to the ballpark to watch the best hitters in the game are ok with those guys simply going through the motions? La Russa and anyone else who believes in this silly “unwritten” rule is flat out wrong. And by the way, NO lead is insurmountable. As Yogi loved to say, “It ain’t over ’till it’s over!”

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1 year ago

[…] to the media. Unfortunately, most of the focus was around the ongoing controversy associated with La Russa’s public disapproval of Yermin Mercedes’ ninth-inning home run against of position player Willians Astudillo on […]

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1 year ago

[…] a week full of controversy and a sweep in New York, the White Sox needed a return home to change their fortunes. That scenario […]

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1 year ago

[…] being his reported confusion considering an extra-innings base runner. Then of course, you have the Yermin Mercedes situation, which put the team in the middle of a national conversation about “unwritten […]

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1 year ago

[…] Mercedes hit a home run on a 3-0 count with a position player pitching for the Twins and La Russa did not publicly back Mercedes, instead siding with the old guard of baseball even when the Twins threw at him the following […]

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