On April 21, Baltimore Orioles superstar third baseman Manny Machado slid into second base, making contract with his spikes into the leg of Boston Red Sox second baseman Dustin Pedroia.
Pedroia would miss the next three games as a result with what was listed as a sore knee and ankle.
That sparked a whole bunch of drama, especially since Pedroia is recognized as Boston’s leader in the clubhouse after the departure of David Ortiz.
Two days later, Red Sox reliever Matt Barnes threw a fastball at Machado’s head in retaliation. Luckily he missed, but Barnes was ejected and suspended by the MLB for what was deemed as an intentional throw.
Pedroia publicly and loudly denounced and apologized for the pitcher’s actions to Machado in a rare on-field interaction.
At the start of this week’s series in Boston on Monday, both sides seemed ready to put the past behind them and move forward, but then Dylan Bundy hit Boston’s best player Mookie Betts in the hip with a fastball in the opening game.
In the second game of the series on Tuesday, Red Sox ace Chris Sale sent a message, throwing a 98 mph fastball behind Machado’s knees in his first at bat of the night.
After the game, Machado, who has been the target of Barnes’ fastball to the head area and Sale’s fastball to the knee region, made it clear what he thinks of the entire Red Sox organization — and it wasn’t pretty.
If you got tired of all the bleeped-out words, here’s the transcript:
"F---ing bulls---," Machado said. "F---ing p---y s---. Coward stuff. I mean, that's the stuff you don't f---ing do. But I mean, I'm not on that side. I'm not in that organization. They're still thinking about that same slide that I did. There was no intention on hurting anybody, and I'm still paying. I'm still trying to get hit at. Get thrown at on my f---ing head. They're f---ing throwing everywhere,” he commented.
"You have pitchers out there with f---ing balls in their hands throwing 100 mph trying to hit people," Machado said. "I've got a f---ing bat, too. I could go up there and crush somebody if I wanted to, but you know what, I'll get suspended for a year and the pitchers only get suspended for two games. That's not cool.”
Finally, ”As I see it, I slid into second base normal and kind of hurt someone a little bit, unintentional. And they're still trying to make me pay the piper. I don't know what their mindset is.”
There was a bit of a silver lining for Machado, though. Here’s what he did in the seventh inning against Sale.
As for the pitcher: he’s not worried about it.
The two AL East rivals clearly don’t like each other and it remains to be seen if this feud will last for the entirety of the 2017 campaign.
The Red Sox won Tuesday's game by the score of 5-2. Machado hit a homer, but Sale got the victory.