"Pisses me off": Red Sox player rips Blue Jays' Manoah's on-field persona

Apr 4 2023, 5:51 pm

Toronto Blue Jays pitcher Alek Manoah doesn’t seem to have the biggest fan in Boston Red Sox outfielder Alex Verdugo.

Via a recent episode of Audacy’s Baseball Isn’t Boring podcast, Verdugo called out the Blue Jays’ ace for the way he carries himself while on the mound.

During many of his starts, Manoah’s often seen, well, exuding his emotions both at his teammates and directed at his opponents, which Verdugo seems to take issue with.

“If it’s a genuine reaction and it’s for the boys, not directed towards somebody, then yeah [it’s fine],” Verdugo said. “Like, I’ll say it right now, I think Alek Manoah goes about it the wrong way, 100% I think he does. You can find videos of him, footage of him in Triple-A going like this to hitters. Last year, telling Franchy and Bobby like go sit, [sh*t] like that and looking right at them.”

Manoah had a record of 16-7 with an ERA of 2.24 and 180 strikeouts in 31 appearances in 2022, as he finished third in American League Cy Young voting in just his second MLB season. He was named the team’s Opening Day starter ahead of last week’s opener, though he went just 3.1 innings while giving up nine hits and five earned runs in an eventual 10-9 win.

Verdugo was referencing a game from July last year where Manoah used some rather choice words to his Red Sox opponents.

“So, it’s like, like that just pisses me off,” Verdugo continued. “It’s not the way it should be played. It should be played like you’re celebrating it with your team, you’re not [f***ing] disrespecting another player who is — at the end of the day, we’re just trying to compete, that’s it.”

Pirates outfielder Andrew McCutchen seemed to be a bit more on Manoah’s side in the same episode.

“Everyone has a different story of why they’re here and how they got here, so a lot of times when these guys are going out there, and they’re showing their raw emotion, it’s because of how they grew up. It’s because of where they come from,” McCutchen said.

While Manoah hasn’t responded yet to the comments publicly, he did address his fiery persona on an appearance on MLB Network earlier today.

“I grew up, you know, playing a lot of passionate baseball since I was 10 years old, travelling… and playing that passionate brand of baseball,” Manoah said earlier today. “I really love baseball man, I really enjoy just being out there. That bulldog comes out because I hate losing. So it’s kind of a mixture of everything.”

The Blue Jays first take on the Red Sox on May 1 at Fenway Park, if you want to keep an eye out on Manoah and Verdugo.

Adam LaskarisAdam Laskaris

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