There has to be middle ground, some other type of punishment/action taken toward Young, who allegedly got into a physical altercation and used anti-Semitic language toward a Jewish man early Friday in Manhattan, just hours before the Tigers were to take the field against the Yankees.
Young needs to go out of his way to prove to Tigers fans, Major League Baseball, and the Jewish community, that he's sorry. Sure, he said so over the weekend. But he was supposed to say so. It's damage control, right? What else would he say?
He could play as early as Tuesday when the Tigers host the Kansas City Royals. He'll be out Monday as MLB officials review his case. He was put on restricted status, which is commonplace when a player has an alcohol- or anger-related offense. Friday's incident seems to fit that criteria, certainly the alcohol provision.
Oftentimes, players who screw up take their punishment on the chin. They sit out a game or two, issue a standard apology and move on. They might mean it with all their heart. They might not.
But that's where doing the right thing comes in. Young, in addition to being dealt a five-game suspension, needs to hit the extreme side of the "I'm sorry" spectrum. Addressing the Jewish community at-large would be a good starting point. Speaking publicly to youngsters about his insensitive comments would be warranted.
Look at it like this: When someone uses such language in the workplace, they're fired or put on leave. The atmospheres of pro ball and the office aren't the same, but there are similarities.
Instead of being fired, in some cases, a "regular" employee is ordered to attend sensitivity courses. It's pretty common, actually. In some unions/employee associations, that's the first step, with termination being the final action. If an employee is hot-headed, they go to anger management.
Young needs both, apparently.
The standards measures, though, probably aren't enough. As mentioned, he should be suspended for at least five games. The courses in anger management and ethnic sensitivity sound great. So do unicorns, rainbows and bunny rabbits. Don't forget lollipops, either.
Young should do what he feels is right, not just what is expected. He could have time away from the Tigers; occupying that time with constructive behavior would be wise. His incident was a PR nightmare, but it could turn into a story of a man who made a mistake, went beyond the normal realm of apology, and set a new standard for MLB.
Adam Biggers has followed Major League Baseball for over 20 years, specifically the Detroit Tigers. He can be found on Twitter @AdamBiggers81.
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