Tony LaRussa, Tim Anderson say Josh Donaldson made racist comment to spark feud: 'Trying to call me Jackie Robinson'

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Josh Donaldson and Tim Anderson’s feud continued on Saturday, when the two needed to be separated after jawing at each other following the last out of the third inning.

In the fifth, when Donaldson came up for his next at-bat, Yasmani Grandal began jawing at him, and the benches and bullpens cleared, the second time in just over a week that the White Sox and Yanks had an altercation stemming from words exchanged between Donaldson and Anderson.

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After Saturday’s game, Chicago manager Tony La Russa said the altercation began because Donaldson made a racist remark towards Anderson.

“He made a racist comment, Donaldson, and that’s all I’m gonna say,” La Russa said, and when he was asked about it again, he refused to comment further.

“Did you hear me say ‘That’s all I’m gonna say?’” La Russa said. “You know what that means? That’s all I’m gonna say.”

Anderson did reveal what Donaldson said, saying he called him “Jackie,” in reference to Jackie Robinson.

“He just made a disrespectful comment, basically trying to call me Jackie Robinson, like ‘what’s up Jackie?’” Anderson said. “I don’t play like that. I wasn’t even bothering nobody today, but he made a comment and it was disrespectful. I don’t think it was called for. It was unnecessary.”

The two began exchanging words in the third when they had to be separated, nine days after a hard tag from Donaldson at third sparked an altercation back in Chicago, but on Saturday, Anderson said the comment came in the first inning, and it escalated from there.

“That happened in the first, the first time he got on,” Anderson said. “I spared him that time, then it happened again. it was just uncalled for. I don’t have time to be playing like that.”

Per The Athletic, Donaldson said he did indeed call Anderson Jackie, claiming it was in reference to a quote from Anderson in a story published in 2019. He said he thought it had been a joke between the two of them.

Follow Ryan Chichester on Twitter: @ryanchichester1