The Red Sox vs Orioles has always been considered a rivalry but now it's personal. After a messed up series last time they played, it could get a lot worse. Round two starts May 1st at Fenway and everyone is still trying to wrap their minds around what happened last time. Time to take a trip down memory lane, aka last Friday.
The slide- Game one, Manny Machado was heading to second and on a controversial slide, hit Sox second-baseman Dustin Pedroia in the knee.
The hit- Two games later, Barnes pitching, Machado at bat. What seems to be an over and done with issue is just getting started. Barnes hits Machado in the head in what looked to be intentional. He was automatically kicked out of the game and is currently serving a four game suspension which he thought about appealing but decided to accept it.
Pedroia comments- After the hit, Pedroia was mouthing to Machado saying he had nothing to do with this and that if he wanted revenge, he would have had someone hit him the next day. He added to that in post game interviews saying "I just told him I didn't have anything to do with that. That's not how you do that, man. I'm sorry to him and his team. If you're going to protect guys, you do it right away. He knows that. We both know that. It's definitely a mishandled situation.” He also said the slide wasn't intentional, it was just bad.
Who was right?- No one knows. Did Machado intentionally hit Pedroia? I think so, personally. He was watching the whole time and never looked like he was going to let up. He played it off well by trying to help him up. But it is never alright to hit a player in the head no matter what circumstances or reasons you have. Was it alright for Pedroia to throw Barnes under the bus? Kinda. It should be known the team did not approve of the hit but a team is a team for a reason. Did Barnes intentionally hit Machado in the head? Maybe. What it looked like to me was he was trying to intentionally hit him in the shoulder but accidently had the pitch go too high. The whole "is this right/wrong" is a personal belief depending on an individual's morals.
Fans- Orioles fans have not been shy about this. I have seen numerous tweets and comments about how they want round two to go. Two that stick out to me are "If Pedroia doesn't end up with a concussion this series, I'm gonna be disappointed," and "If we can't strike Pedroia, strike Betts just because." Retaliation is not going to help anything, it will only make this mess so much worse. If you don't want this to continue, why wish injury on someone? That'll keep the cycle going.
So what will happen round two? Who the hell knows but it'll be interesting to watch. It will more than likely be anti-climatic but anything's possible.