Anderson on Tatis' style: 'I like to see it'

August 19th, 2020

White Sox shortstop loved what Fernando Tatis Jr. did on Monday night. He praised Tatis' energy and joy and the emotion he brings to the game. But in the wake of Tatis hitting a grand slam on a 3-0 pitch in a blowout game, Anderson thought back to another moment.

“Definitely a step forward,” he said Tuesday. “When my incident happened, it wasn’t too many guys speaking out or supporting that incident.”

His incident was an epic bat flip in April 2019 that sparked a brawl with the Royals. In the wake of that one, Anderson remembers being blistered on social media and on talk radio.

On Monday, though, players ranging from Johnny Bench to Reggie Jackson to a string of active players took to social media to defend Tatis and blast one of baseball’s unwritten rules.

Anderson smiled some and laughed some in a Zoom interview with reporters. He believes baseball will benefit from the discussion and the opening up of the unwritten rulebook.

“They're unwritten, you know, so I think you can do as you please,” Anderson said. “No, I don't really care about that. I liked it. But he shouldn’t have apologized. No need for that. Apologized for what? You hit a grand slam.”

Tatis has electrified the game with equal amounts of flair, personality and gobs of production. He’s a big reason the Padres are one of MLB’s most entertaining teams in 2020.

“I think he’s been hot, swinging the bat well,” Anderson said. “So I think it’s all right, go ahead. He plays with a lot of energy, and I like it. I like to see it. That’s the only way this game is gonna change. If the pitcher doesn’t like it, don’t throw it in the zone.

“You know, we've mentioned changing the game several times before, but it’s tough to change the game when there's so many unwritten rules. To see things like that, it definitely makes it exciting."

Commissioner Rob Manfred has urged players to reveal more of themselves on the field and to be unafraid about showing the kind of emotion that was once taboo.

“We’re on social media, we’re posting things and being more relatable,” Anderson said. “We're giving them dope baseball content that they want to see. We’re also doing things between the lines that’s fun.”

Grandal sits
White Sox catcher , who left Monday’s game with back stiffness, was out of the starting lineup on Tuesday. started in his place.

“We started treating him last night and continue to today,” White Sox manager Rick Renteria said. “He’s walking around better today. Hopefully it's not long. Right now, I’m listing him day to day. I don’t think this is going to be a protracted stint of not playing. Hopefully, somewhere here before the end of the week he’s back in there.”

White Sox make history
The White Sox are the first team since at least 1900 to start games with a pair of home runs twice in a five-game span, according to Elias. The previous shortest span was by the 2018 Dodgers, who did it twice in 10 games. Anderson and Yoán Moncada led off Monday’s game with home runs, while Anderson and Eloy Jiménez did it on Aug. 12.