The Tampa Bay Rays may very well be the biggest threat to the Yankees in the American League this season, and after there appears to be some bad blood boiling between the AL East rivals.
Following Sunday’s game, in which the Rays won on a walk-off single to take three of four from the Yankees, Tampa second baseman Brandon Lowe called out the Yankees for being “childish.”
“It’s pretty frustrating to have them think that you’re not able to chirp and say anything back to them. They’ve been doing it the whole time and for us to not be able to do it back, it’s a little childish,” Lowe told reporters after the game, per NJ.com. “You’ve got to wear it. If it’s going to happen, just wear it.”
Lowe had hit the game-tying home run off James Paxton in the seventh inning, knocking the left-hander out of the game.
As Paxton was walking off the mound, he shot a glare back toward the Rays dugout, which was apparently smack talking across the field.
“I just heard some jawing back and forth,” Paxton said. “Whatever. It’s competition. The guys are fired up. It is what it is.”
The smack talk had ensued during Saturday’s doubleheader when the Yankees dugout was hot over Rays reliever Andrew Kittredge going up and in on both Gio Urshela and DJ LeMahieu. It led to the ejection of hitting coach Marcus Thames and manager Aaron Boone, who ran out to argue with the home plate umpire after Thames’ ejection.
Kittredge has a history with the Yankees, throwing near the head of former backup catcher Austin Romine in 2018 – which Aaron Judge said the team has not forgotten about.
Lowe added the Yankees should have gotten over the incident with Romine in 2018 by now, and couldn’t understand why the Yankees could dish it but not take it.
“They’ve been chirping the whole weekend and we chirped at them once and they got upset about,” Lowe said. “That was really the whole thing of it was, they’ve kind of ben loud about everything and we did it back and they didn’t like it.”