The Hall of Famer was hoping his team would ease up on gas pedal throughout Monday’s blowout win
Yermin Mercedes was chastised from the Hall of Fame old-school dugout leader before the match began for hitting a house run in the ninth inning on a 3-0 count in Monday’s blowout 16-4 victory against Minnesota.
Twins pitcher Tyler Duffey and manager Rocco Baldelli were ejected from Tuesday’s game in the seventh inning for casting Mercedes’ legs at a transparent retaliatory pitch in the home run the evening before.
La Russa defended Duffey along with the Twins for throwing in his own participant.
“It wasn’t obvious to me. The man threw a sinker. It did not look good. So, I wasn’t that questionable. I’m suspicious if somebody cries at somebody’s head. Then I’m suspicious. I don’t have a problem with how the Twins handled that,” he explained.
He told reporters Tuesday afternoon it was an error for Mercedes to swing at the pitch.
“That’s just sportsmanship, respect for the game, respect for your competitor,” La Russa said. “He made a mistake, therefore there’ll be a consequence he has to live here within our family. But it will not happen again since (third base coach Joe McEwing) will be on the lookout and I will be too, and we’ll go running in the front of the pitcher when we have to.”
Mercedes had been on a tiny hot streak since the season began.
“I’m going to play like this. I am Yermin. I can not be another individual because if I’m changing, everything will (be) shifting,” he said. “Everything was good. Some of my teammates just talked with me. Just be relaxed, everything was good, everything was good, just do you. We are good.”
Mercedes found support from teammate Tim Anderson and reigning NL Cy Young award-winner Trevor Bauer within the entire ordeal.
The Twins are continue with a 14-26 record.