The Chicago White Sox took offense to comments made by New York Yankees infielder Josh Donaldson on the field Saturday, calling the veteran player's remarks "racist."
White Sox shortstop Tim Anderson, who is black, was upset to Donaldson calling him "Jackie" during Saturday's game.
Donaldson admitted after Saturday's game to making the comment. He said it was in reference to a 2019 Sports Illustrated story when Anderson likened himself to a current-day Jackie Robinson, the first black player to play in the major leagues.
"He made a disrespectful comment," Anderson said. "Basically tried to call me Jackie Robinson, 'What's up Jackie.' I don't play like that. I don't need to play at all. I wasn't really bothering nobody today, but he made the comment, and it was disrespectful, and I don't think it was called for. It was unnecessary."
Said White Sox manager Tony La Russa: "He made a racist comment, Donaldson. And that's all I'm gonna say. ... That's as strong as it gets."
Donaldson made the "Jackie," comment in both the first and third innings, according to Anderson, with the players arguing with each other in the third inning before they both were escorted off the field.
Benches emptied in the fifth inning after White Sox catcher Yasmani Grandal began to have words with Donaldson at the plate.
The teams also had a benches-clearing incident on May 13 at Chicago after Donaldson made a hard tag on Anderson.
"I took responsibility for the tag, I wasn't trying to do anything there," Donaldson said afterward. "Today just trying to diffuse it, like make light, like, 'Hey, we're not trying to start any brawls,' or anything like that. Obviously he deemed that it was disrespectful and, look, if he did, I apologize.
"That's not what I was trying to do by any manner and that's what happened."
The series will conclude Sunday night in a nationally-televised game.
Anderson was asked if he agreed with La Russa that Donaldson's comment was racist.
"Same, along that same line," Anderson said.
--Field Level Media