Things happen in the heat of the moment but Jeff Samardzija said Friday he wouldn’t mind a do over on a few events Thursday.
The White Sox pitcher — who has been at the center of tension between his team and the Kansas City Royals since he hit Lorenzo Cain on Opening Day — could twice be seen charging into a mass of bodies during Thursday’s brawl that resulted in five ejections, including his own. Samardzija seemed to be interested in engaging Cain and instead took down Royals third-base coach Mike Jirschele, who appeared to try and keep the two apart. On Friday, Samardzija talked about unfortunate incidents happening when emotions and passion are involved.
“Nobody wants to act that way,” Samardzija said. “In a way it’s embarrassing, and you want to come back and show [that] you want to be known for what you do on the field and the way you play the game. Obviously look back on it and you're not happy about it, you’re not proud about it. But I wear my emotions on my sleeve and I care for my teammates and I want to win every game.”
Royals players have expressed their distaste for Samardzija. From Cain saying “I’m not a big fan,” to others citing Samardzija “chirping” from the bench after Christian Colon lined into a double play in the sixth inning, Kansas City doesn’t appear too fond of the right-hander.
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As for ramifications from the brawl, Samardzija said he’s not focused on whether or not he could be punished for his actions during the brawl. But it’s hard to imagine that he’d escape without some sort of suspension. There’s also no telling if Chris Sale could receive a suspension after he made his way to the Royals clubhouse in the eighth inning.
“We need to pitch every game we can,” Samardzija said. “That’s the consequences you deal with. Like I said, we need to act a little more mature and understand that things happen within games and we need to control ourselves better and we’ll go about it that way and we’ll learn from it, like we said. But we understand as two starters on this team that we’re very important to this team and we need to play and you definitely can’t do your team any help when you’re watching from afar.”