It's hard to believe that in a sport with $200 million athletes, a stadium could get something so wrong.
No splendor in phony grass: It's hard to believe that in a sport with $200 million athletes, a stadium could get something so wrong.
The brand-new turf at Toronto's Rogers Centre is so soft and uneven that the Orioles were hesitant to play on it, and they probably wish they hadn't. Jimmy Paredes got hit in the face by a bad-hop grounder at batting practice Tuesday, and Ryan Flaherty suffered a groin injury while running the bases Wednesday.
The Blue Jays also lost an important player during the series when catcher Dioner Navarro suffered a hamstring strain on the spongy base path Tuesday.
There's talk that Major League Baseball could look at the situation, but there doesn't appear to be anything that could be done about it over the short term except hope nobody else gets hurt.
Machado makes it through: Orioles manager Buck Showalter had to be sweating bullets with Manny Machado out on that hazardous surface, but Machado said he wasn't worried about the danger to his surgically repaired knees. He just shared his opinion that the new turf was an abomination.
"I was thinking about the turf, that it [stunk], but what are you going to do?" he said. "You can't do nothing about that. But my knees are fine; my knees are great. My body feels awesome. So I wasn't thinking about my knees or worrying about getting hurt. Just trying to get out of there as quick as possible."
The flip side: There could be a silver lining to all this. When the Kansas City Royals head to Toronto in July and inevitably get into a brawl with Jose Bautista and the Blue Jays, they'll be fighting on a surface as forgiving as a WWE ring.
Seriously, though: The Royals are getting under everybody's skin with their irritating on-field behavior, and need to tone it down before somebody gets hurt. They've engineered a competitive renaissance as dramatic as the Orioles', but they need to act like they've been there before.
Baseball etiquette is evolving, but when Yordano Ventura, one of your starting pitchers, gets ejected from two consecutive starts, it's probably time for a team meeting.