Cincinnati Reds pitcher Amir Garrett has had his suspension reduced from seven games to five games by Major League Baseball. The left-handed reliever appealed his suspension this past week after he was handed a seven game suspension for “inciting a bench clearing incident” with the Chicago Cubs. Despite no punches being thrown, and Garrett touching absolutely no one, he was the only player suspended for his “involvement” and somehow got a week’s worth. Garrett will begin serving the suspension tonight, and assuming there are no postponements, he should return on Sunday in Colorado. The Reds will be playing with a 25-man roster until he returns.

Chicago Cubs infielder Javier Báez, who jumped over the railing of the Cubs dugout and walked onto the field to challenge Garrett to a fight was not suspended, but was instead given an undisclosed fine for his actions.

The punishment doesn’t seem to fit the crime. Garrett didn’t throw a baseball at anyone. He didn’t even truly confront anyone on the field. He simply yelled some words that may or may not even have been directed at anyone on the Cubs before the Cubs came onto the field. Ryan Tepera threw behind Milwaukee Brewers pitcher Brandon Woodruff back in April and said “I chose to do it and send a message the way I did” after the game. He literally threw a baseball at someone, on purpose, admitted it, and got suspended for three games. Garrett was initially suspended for a week because he screamed some words.

Michael Hill has taken over as the person in charge of on-field discipline this year for Major League Baseball. The former front office employee for the Miami Marlins has not exactly been consistent with his rulings, and it’s certainly felt like he’s been extra harsh on the Cincinnati Reds between how the Nick Castellanos suspension was handled given that multiple Cardinals players were seen pushing Reds players while Castellanos never touched anyone and he was the only one suspended, as well as the Garrett situation now.

24 Responses

  1. Mark Moore

    It’s still ridiculous. 2 games max and same for Baez. But nothing we can change now.

    Let’s hope our AG learns something about self-control and the consequences in this upside down world of Rob Manfred’s.

    And I have to think this kind of thing makes it into the CBA discussions. If it doesn’t, then nobody recognizes it’s a significant problem (at least for our club).

  2. Old Big Ed

    This may explain why they pitched him 1.2 innings last night, if they had a heads-up what the decision was going to be.

    • Doug Gray

      That was my first thought upon seeing the suspension announced today, too.

  3. Klugo

    The best way to stick it to them is to win, win, win, and keep winning.

  4. Rednat

    Garret is a guy that will take this very personally. i think he will come back very strong!

    • TR

      AG has the talent. The long baseball season is a mental game also.

  5. RojoBenjy

    Michael Hill is derelict in his duty and no mistake.

  6. Matt WI

    Now I want players to prove the precedent- anybody has clear license to climb the railing, say whatever they want to say, and expect no real punishment.

  7. Bred

    Bauer has posted on YouTube after the Nick and AG incident in favor of the Reds and mocking MLB. While I agree with his assessment of each situation, except he let Molina off the hook, I wish he’d stop sticking up for the Reds. MLB despises him, and maybe the Reds are paying for his opinions. I know that would be awfully petty of MLB, but it might be in character for them.

    • TR

      Makes me favor Trevor Bauer, when not pitching against the Reds, even more.

  8. RedsMonk65

    Good news…sort of, I guess. Anything over two games is excessive given the circumstances and considering the punishment others have received or not received in other cases. And it does seem like the Reds have been unfairly dealt with in these two instances (Castellanos and Garrett).

    That said, I do hope Garrett will take this to heart and learn to channel his emotions in a productive way on the mound so that they don’t negatively impact the team. There’s no need to do what he did against the Cubs. The punishment certainly does not fit the “crime,” but there’s still no need for it. Pump your fist, get the ball back, next batter please… Ride your emotions (in baseball or anything else in life) and you’re bound to derail from time to time. A strikeout is it’s own exclamation point.

    • RojoBenjy

      Again, say what you will about Garrett being over the top (and I cringed and looked down on him for it)—but the one that took the action that led to benches clearing was Báez. And there is no excuse for him not getting a suspension.

      Not one.

      But I think we’re all mostly in agreement there.

      • RedsMonk65

        Yes, I agree. If Garrett warrants a suspension, then Baez certainly does.

        And the whole mess with the Cardinals was even more patently unfair.

        But Garrett just needs to settle down and pitch. Period. We know he can talk. I want to see him pitch–consistently and well.

      • Homer (Not Bailey)

        It seems like everyone is forgetting that Garrett has a history. At least this time he didn’t charge the bench after running his mouth. I guess that’s progress.

    • Ponyboy

      Perfectly stated. I love Garret’s passion, but when you’re hurting your team, it’s time to reel it in, regardless of whether the league standard on such things is seemingly arbitrary. Yes, it’s frustrating to say the least.

  9. Brad

    I am guessing Michael Hill is a big “respect the unwritten rules of baseball guy” and throwing at people is ok, but don’t dare yell or show emotion.

    • RojoBenjy

      Then he’s toxic to the sport, for sure.

  10. Roger Garrett

    The decisions that have been made regarding Nick and Garrett are all about COVID.Its silly of course but MLB is not wanting anybody to say look all those guys are on top of each other with no masks etc etc.Its a political statement period and common sense doesn’t even enter in to it.Best thing for our guys to do if they want to show emotion which I think is good for the game is to just react second not first.Let the other guy make the first move.

    • RojoBenjy

      If that’s the case it’s even more patently ridiculous.

      It’s like Ohio HS wrestling rules—not allowed to shake hands before or after the match due to COVID

      Ok— backing away from politics now

  11. Kevin Patrick

    Nick Castellanos’ comments after his suspension in regards to the the legalese he was bombarded with at his appeal I think is revealing of what is going through the minds of those whole dole out the consequences. Its a bunch of people listening to lawyers. No wonder its all a bunch of stupidity… Nobody wants to stand up for these vulnerable players in the face of COVID even though they know something is wrong. I see a few comments here about Garrett needing to be more accountable for his actions…and yet I’ve not actually SEEN him do anything wrong at all. I tend to trust my eyes… If his words or any other players words or gestures have incited violence on the field, I’d like to know what was said firstly, then all can see just how thin skinned some of the other players are that are leaving the dugout, grabbing players by the neck, etc… In the unlikely scenario that the Reds lose the division by a game or two, to say the Cardinals or the Cubs, it is perfectly plausible that the suspensions that MLB meted affected the standings at the end of the year. If I were the Cardinals or Cubs, I wouldn’t want to win that way. And if they do win that way, all those guys who left the dugout can legitimately be called “pansies”. The Reds and their players are in no position to complain about the consequences not given to other players because they know the other teams don’t deserve it either. But if you leave the dugout in this environment knowing the consequences… then I say you are a “pansy”.

  12. Eddiek957

    No ejections. This is a nothing burger. Why does MLB have to do anything? Besides a little yelling nothing happened

    • JayTheRed

      Maybe he is mad the Reds never called him up or hired him for an opening. I don’t get this punishment it’s way too long.. 3 days max Garrett got fined too already. I am sickened by this puniishment.