Regardless of who you think was at fault in Tuesday’s brawl between Manny Machado and Yordano Ventura, one thing is pretty certain: The Royals had Ventura’s back, but not really.
“If you watch how that whole play unfolded, Sal (Perez) is a huge dude,” MLB analyst Cliff Floyd began on CBS Sports Radio’s The DA Show. “When Manny got smoked, he flipped his bat, sort of took a stutter step and then went out and got him. I’ve been in a few of (these scuffles) because I played with Pedro Martinez back in my Montreal days, and it don’t take much to stop a guy from getting to your starting pitcher. So whether that be Hos (Eric Hosmer) coming in from first, the kid over at third, (Cheslor) Cuthbert, big Sal coming from behind (the plate) – whoever. They could have got to Manny before Manny got to Yordano.
“Now I know they have each other’s back,” Floyd continued. “I went to their camp in spring training this year and saw what a great group (they) are. Fell in love with how they’re together and a close-knit family. But Tuesday night was like, ‘All right, you’re on an island by yourself. We love you, we’ll pick you up and dust you off, but enough’s enough. You need to get your ass kicked.’ And look, if you’re so tough, then that’s what you needed to do for yourself, so then you handle it – and I don’t think he handled it that well because Manny was throwing him around like a little rag doll out there.”
Floyd hopes MLB sends a message to Machado and Ventura for their shenanigans, especially Ventura, for whom he feels a 20-game suspension isn’t out of the question.
Speaking of punishments, Floyd, 43, said he wishes PED suspensions were this severe when he played in the 1990s and 2000s.
“I think Major League Baseball has done a terrific job of cleaning up the game as much as they can,” Floyd said. “I think they should strive even harder, and when I look back on it, I think Major League Baseball was trying to get a grasp of what was going on. We had a lot of issues going on. We had amphetamines, we had PEDs, we had so much going on that they had to clean it up slowly and understand what was going on first, but now I think they got a good grasp of what’s at stake.”
Floyd, who hit 233 homers in his career, his 34 in 2005 with the Mets. That ranked 15th in baseball.
“Thirty-four homers now, I’d get $200 million,” Floyd said. “I did everything I could possibly do in those years. In those years, the money wasn’t what it is today. Totally understand it. (I was) well-compensated for it. No (complaints about) what I made in my career at all. But when you start looking at (guys hitting) 50s and 60s, I used to come home and wonder, ‘What am I doing wrong still?’ I was naive to the whole steroid (era). Guys were doing what they were doing, and it was like, ‘You’re a superstar and I’m just a good player.’”