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Anderson hushes booing Yankees fans with HR

Written by 
Published in Baseball
Sunday, 22 May 2022 20:52

NEW YORK -- Tim Anderson said everything he had to say with one swing of the bat -- and a commanding trot around the bases.

Anderson hit a three-run homer and then put a finger to his lips to silence fans booing and chanting "Jackie" at him, capping a tumultuous weekend at Yankee Stadium and helping the Chicago White Sox beat New York 5-0 Sunday night for a doubleheader sweep.

"What a day," White Sox manager Tony La Russa said.

A day after Anderson, who is Black, said he was offended by Yankees slugger Josh Donaldson, who is white, calling him "Jackie," the All-Star shortstop didn't play in the first game. AJ Pollock hit a tiebreaking homer off Aroldis Chapman in the ninth inning as the White Sox won 3-1.

Anderson was jeered during pregame introductions and prior to each at-bat in the nightcap. He had already hit two singles when he homered over the right-field wall with two outs in the eighth.

Anderson took a slow trot and put his hands to his lips in a shushing gesture as he rounded the bases. He clapped his hands several times upon crossing home plate and pointed skyward before again making a silencing motion.

"I think that was just one of the cooler things I've seen -- watching an entire crowd that's shown low class towards him, booing him, calling him 'Jackie' and then hitting a homer and putting us in a good position to win,'' White Sox starter Michael Kopech said. "Have nothing but respect for him.''

Anderson did not speak to reporters before or after the doubleheader.

"When you talk about how special he is, just think about the game he had under those circumstances," La Russa said. "It's special.''

Donaldson also did not speak to reporters. Through a Yankees spokesman, Donaldson said he had not talked to Major League Baseball about the situation and didn't speak to Anderson on Sunday.

There didn't appear to be any carryover on the field in either game of the previous afternoon's anger and tension when the benches and bullpens emptied. Donaldson acknowledged Saturday he called Anderson "Jackie" -- a reference to pioneering baseball icon Jackie Robinson that elicited criticism from both managers.

Major League Baseball is investigating the incident.

"He deserves the recognition and he deserves the respect," La Russa said of Anderson. "If somebody disrespects him, he should get upset. I know I would.''

La Russa said Donaldson's comment was "racist" following Saturday's game, a 7-5 Yankees win. New York manager Aaron Boone said Sunday he believed Donaldson didn't mean any harm with his words, but thought using such a term was "somewhere he should not be going."

Kopech returned from paternity leave Friday after going home to witness the birth of his second child. He retired the first 17 batters before Rob Brantly doubled in the sixth. "To be honest, my mind hasn't been on baseball until yesterday, and that probably helped me quite a bit,'' Kopech said.

Kopech (1-1) allowed just the one hit and two walks while striking out six over seven innings.

Yankees starter Luis Severino scattered eight hits over seven scoreless innings. Jonathan Loaisiga (1-2) lost in relief.

"They outpitched us today,'' Boone said. "They were able to hold us down today.''

Donaldson sat out the finale after going 0-for-4 but coming within a few feet of a much bigger day in the opener. With two on and two outs in the first, Donaldson lined out to third base, where Yoan Moncada -- inserted into the lineup in place of Anderson -- saved a run by snaring the ball at his shoe tops. In the fourth, Donaldson flied out to the wall in left field.

With two on and one out in the eighth, he flied out to the track in right-center.

White Sox catcher Yasmani Grandal, who confronted Donaldson on Saturday, went out to talk to reliever Kendall Graveman as the Yankees third baseman approached the batter's box. Donaldson stepped back out of the box as Grandal returned to the plate.

Aaron Judge's eighth-inning homer off Graveman cost Johnny Cueto a win in the opener. The resurgent 36-year-old righty allowed six hits, walked two and struck out five in his second major league outing of the season.

Liam Hendriks, who used an expletive earlier Sunday to describe how he didn't believe Donaldson's explanation that he made the "Jackie" reference as part of an inside joke with Anderson, struck out two in a perfect ninth to preserve the win for Graveman (1-1).

Hendriks pumped his fist and yelled loud enough to be heard three levels away after whiffing Jose Trevino for his 13th save.

Yankees starter Jameson Taillon allowed one run on five hits and one walk with seven strikeouts in a season-high seven innings. Chapman (0-2) took the loss.

The Associated Press contributed to this story.

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