TAMPA (WFLA) – Tampa Bay Rays manager Kevin Cash has been suspended for one game and fined an undisclosed amount for his ejection and comments after last night’s game against the New York Yankees.
Yankees closer Aroldis Chapman threw a 101 mph fastball near the head of pinch-hitter Michael Brosseau while closing out his first save of the season, prompting the benches to empty as the Yankees ended their six-game losing streak against the Rays with a 5-3 victory.
“Somebody’s got to be accountable,” Cash said. “And the last thing I’ll say on this is I got a whole damn stable full of guys that throw 98 mph. Period.”
“We’re talking about a 100 mph fastball over a young man’s head,” Cash said. “It makes no sense. It’s poor judgment, poor coaching, it’s just poor teaching what they’re doing and what they’re allowing to do, the chirping from the dugout.”
Chapman struck out Brosseau to end the game. Then Brosseau began walking toward the visiting dugout, before turning back to exchange words with a Yankee player. The dugouts and benches emptied and players gathered near home plate, but they mostly kept their distance before dispersing to their respective clubhouses.
In the first inning, Yankees starter Masahiro Tanaka drilled Joey Wendle with a 95 mph fastball, which Cash and Wendle both believed to be intentional. Players on both benches previously exchanged words during their game on Aug. 9.
“As far as if there was actual intent behind Chapman’s delivery, I’m not really sure, but pretty frustrating honestly,” Brosseau said. “It’s not what you want to see coming in off the bench, especially when we pretty much let everything go after Joey took the message for us and did it like a man, kind of just took it and carried on with the day.
“But if there was any intent behind it and they want to send another message, I guess they made their point.”
The Rays are 7-2 against the Yankees and lead second-place New York by 3.5 games. Tensions have run high between the clubs for years, at least since now-retired Yankees left-hander CC Sabathia was ejected for plunking Jesus Sucre in 2018.
New York manager Aaron Boone downplayed the fracas initially, but was bothered when informed of Cash’s threat.
“That’s a pretty scary comment,” Boone said. “I don’t think that’s right at all. But I’m not going to get into it right now.”
Boone was suspended also for one game and Chapman was suspended for three games.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.