Baltimore Orioles infielder Manny Machado apologized Monday for throwing his bat intentionally, but that doesn't mean he's simply going to accept the five-game suspension Major League Baseball handed him Tuesday.
Yahoo Sports reported first that the league would penalize Machado for throwing his bat after a swing and miss against the Oakland Athletics on Sunday, a penalty that Machado plans to appeal. Machado issued an apology after the series, which included two benches-clearing incidents that involved him.
Here's some of his apology, via the Baltimore Sun:
In a recorded interview on the club-owned Mid-Atlantic Sports Network, Machado said he was sorry for what happened Sunday. He was not made available to other media until after Monday's game. After “seeing the replay over and over again, I definitely want to apologize.”
Machado also said in the MASN interview: “I want to apologize to all my teammates, my coaching staff, the entire Orioles organization and Oakland, and to our fans for the way I acted and overreacted on that.”
The penalty is one game fewer than Brandon Workman of the Red Sox recently received for throwing a ball near the head of Tampa Bay's Evan Longoria. It also doesn't seem to take into account what else happened in the series against Oakland.
Much of the series was played with added tension because Machado, who is 21 years old, appeared to lose his cool. He didn't like the hard tag that Josh Donaldson put on him Friday, and Machado also took exception to Fernando Abad throwing inside Sunday. Later in the Abad at-bat, with the Orioles trailing by 10 runs, Machado let go of his bat on the follow-through and flung it well beyond third base.
The A's later said they didn't like Machado hitting catcher Derek Norris twice in the head on a back swing, which might have prompted Abad to throw inside on Machado. While it's impossible to know if Machado hit Norris on purpose — he hasn't admitted as much yet — the A's think circumstantial evidence shows he did.
After a terrific rookie season in 2013 — at least most of the way — Machado is batting .229/.283/.610 this season. O's general manager Dan Duquette has said Machado might be sent to the minors if he keeps struggling.
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