Philadelphia Phillies reliever Matt Strahm finally returned home to Citizens Bank Park on Saturday after going through a lengthy standoff with former Boston Red Sox teammate Kutter Crawford after the national anthem. .
He didn’t know he would have to head to the clubhouse because the referees sent him and Crawford off for their actions.
Matchups on the field, court, or ice have been going on for quite some time in sports when the national anthem comes to a close. It’s simply for bragging rights, as the last man standing on their respective playing surface gets the «win».
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Well, with MLB instituting its new shot clock rules to speed up the game of baseball, Strahm and Crawford took things a little too far when the umpires warned them to leave the field, then had no choice but to throw them out.
Speaking to Audacy’s «Baseball Isn’t Boring» podcast, Strahm explained the entire situation that resulted in not only an ejection, but also a fine from the league.
«Zero of that was planned,» he explained. «The anthem was over, I looked away and Kutter gave me kind of a smile. And I knew exactly what that smile meant, so I just stood there. Zero plan on that. We just locked eyes after the anthem and we both we still had our hat on.» over our hearts and none of us moved.
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«I’ve never done anything like this in my life, but if you know me, you know that competition means everything to me, so I felt like they were calling me at the time. Looking back, it probably wasn’t the wisest decision I made.» . I’ve done in my big league career, but yeah, keep going.»
Despite the sending off, however, it appeared that Strahm earned bragging rights.
«I didn’t even realize they kicked me out,» he said. “The first base umpire came up to me and said, ‘You’ve got to get going.’ And all I said was ‘OK, well, it’s our home field, so he should go first, right?’ And then he said ‘OK,’ and when I looked over at Kutter that he was leaving, and I went down the steps and they told me they kicked me out… (Rob Thomson) told me they kicked me out once I got down. Never seen a warning or anything but I guess I should have known better with how strict they are on the shot clock. Lesson learned. Embarrassing moment, learn from it, move on.»
Being that Crawford is on the 15-day disabled list at the moment, his penalty for being sent off is much higher than Strahm’s, but red sox Manager Alex Cora said he will get help from a certain teammate.
«I know there’s a guy who went to the same school as him who’s probably going to take care of that,» he said.
Chris Sale and Crawford both attended Florida Gulf Coast University, so that’s where help could come.
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It is unknown how much Crawford and Strahm were fined.