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Aaron Judge Criticizes Josh Donaldson Over 'Jackie' Comment to Tim Anderson

Judge took Anderson's side as he spoke about what transpired over the weekend for the first time.
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NEW YORK — Aaron Judge weighed in on Josh Donaldson's controversial comments for the first time on Monday night, candidly criticizing his teammate for what he said to White Sox shortstop Tim Anderson.

"It's a tough one. Joke or not, I just don't think it's the right thing to do there," Judge said after the Yankees fell 6-4 to the Orioles at Yankee Stadium.

Donaldson called Anderson "Jackie" on Saturday, claiming his reference was a joke traced back to an interview the shortstop did in 2019, telling Sports Illustrated that he feels like today's Jackie Robinson. 

It seems like he was the only one in on that joke, though. 

Anderson, along with his teammates and coaches, have denounced Donaldson's comments over the last several days, condemning what the third baseman said. Major League Baseball doubled on Monday, slapping Donaldson with a one-game suspension as his words played a role in inciting a benches-clearing incident during Saturday's game.

"Especially given the history," Judge continued. "The series in Chicago, kind of a little bit of beef between Anderson and JD. Anderson is one of the best shortstops in the game and he's a big part of MLB, what's going on here and how we can grow the game. 

"JD made a mistake, owned up to it and now we gotta move on."

Donaldson was absent at Yankee Stadium on Monday, staying home after landing on the COVID-19 injured list. He, along with Joey Gallo and Kyle Higashioka, were all feeling under the weather. None have tested positive for the COVID-19 virus as of Monday night.

The slugger is appealing his one-game suspension.

"JD is a pro," Judge added. "He talked to all of us, filled us in on what he was referring to about, I guess the 2019 interview that TA did. But still, I just don't think it was the right move at all. But, we've got a suspension and time to move on."

Yankees manager Aaron Boone was also blunt in recent days about what Donaldson said, something the slugger has since apologized for. That said, the skipper explained that he does not think Donaldson should received a suspension.

It's safe to assume members of the White Sox clubhouse disagree.

Asked if Donaldson's comments can linger in New York's locker room, impacting the chemistry this team has built over the first few months of the regular season, Judge said that Donaldson owning up to his actions is all you can ask for.

"We're grown men," he said. "We're playing games every day. You can't sit here and linger on a loss. You can't sit here and dwell on something that happened. You got to learn from it. He made a mistake and now it's time to move on and keep playing baseball."

After Monday's loss to Baltimore, New York has now dropped three games in a row for the first time this season, all of a sudden facing an onslaught of adversity after cruising through the first few weeks in May. 

Judge homered twice in Monday's loss, widening his MLB home run lead with his 16th and 17th long balls of the season. No other big leaguer has hit more than 12 homers as of Tuesday morning.


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