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White Sox accuse Yankees Josh Donaldson of making racist ‘Jackie’ remark; MLB is investigating

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The Chicago White Sox on Saturday accused New York Yankees slugger Josh Donaldson of making a racist comment toward Chicago shortstop Tim Anderson.

After the Yankees’ 7-5 win in New York, Anderson, who is black, said Donaldson called him “Jackie” during the game, a reference to MLB legend Jackie Robinson.

“He just made a comment, you know, disrespectful,” Anderson said. told reporters. “He was basically trying to call me Jackie Robinson. Like, ‘What’s up, Jackie?’ I don’t play like that, I don’t really play at all.

“I wasn’t really going to upset anyone today, but he made that comment, and you know it was disrespectful, and I don’t think it’s necessary. Unnecessary.”

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The umpires, left, call for calm as Chicago White Sox third baseman coach Joe McEwing (99), second from right, holds off White Sox shortstop Tim Anderson (7) during a a game against the New York Yankees, Saturday, May 21, 2022, in New York City.
(AP Photo/Bebeto Matthews)

White Sox manager Tony La Russa called Donaldson’s comment “racist”.

“It’s as strong as it gets,” La Russa said.

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Robinson was a six-time all-star who broke the MLB color barrier in 1947. He played in six World Series and the league retired No. 42 for all teams. He was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1962.

A portrait of Brooklyn Dodgers infielder Jackie Robinson in uniform in 1945.

A portrait of Brooklyn Dodgers infielder Jackie Robinson in uniform in 1945.
(Hulton Archive/Getty Images)

Donaldson, who is white, said he had jokingly called Anderson “Jackie” in the past following a 2019 Sports Illustrated interview in which Anderson said he felt like “the Jackie Robinson of ‘today”.

“My sense of that is not a term trying to be racist by any fact,” Donaldson said. “Obviously he thought that was disrespectful…and look, if he did, I apologize. That’s not what I was trying to do in any way and that’s what that happened.”

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Anderson said Donaldson made a reference to “Jackie” early in the round before the pair started chewing in third. Things seemed to get worse in the fifth when White Sox catcher Yasmani Grandal faced Donaldson as Donaldson approached home plate.

New York Yankees third baseman Josh Donaldson in the third inning of a game against the Chicago White Sox, Saturday, May 21, 2022, in New York City. New York Yankees third baseman Josh Donaldson in the third inning of a game against the Chicago White Sox, Saturday, May 21, 2022, in New York City.

New York Yankees third baseman Josh Donaldson in the third inning of a game against the Chicago White Sox, Saturday, May 21, 2022, in New York City.
(AP Photo/Bebeto Matthews)

“Believe me, you don’t want me to tell you what I told him,” Grandal told reporters.

Anderson then yelled at Donaldson, prompting some of his White Sox teammates to hold him back.

“This game went through a period where a lot of that feedback was intended, and I think we’re way past that,” Grandal added. “And that’s just unacceptable. I just thought it was a low blow, and I want to make sure my team is back. There’s no way you’re allowed to say something like that. .”

Major League Baseball is investigating the incident.

“I know…we’re talking about it. I have to get to the bottom of it,” Yankees coach Aaron Boone added.

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The teams must play in a doubleheader on Sunday, the last time they meet in the regular season.

The Associated Press contributed to this report

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