As San Diego Padres third baseman Manny Machado appeals a one-game suspension for "aggressively arguing and making contact" with home plate umpire Bill Welke following his ejection during Saturday night's loss to the Colorado Rockies, the Major League Baseball Umpires Association believes the punishment was too light.
The MLBUA called the punishment a "slap in the face of all umpires" and a "disgrace to the game itself," noting Machado "violently" threw his bat during the incident, per The Athletic's Marc Carig:
"The opportunity has always existed to discuss, privately, any concerns the MLBUA has," said MLBPA executive director Tony Clark, via Carig. "To the extent there is an interest to have a conversation about professionalism and accountability, we are more than willing to have it."
Machado was ejected in the top of the fifth inning after he disagreed with a pair of strike calls:
After the game, Machado said he didn't feel as though San Diego pitchers were given the same strike zone:
On Monday, he denied making contact with Welke.
He added, according to the Associated Press, "I've just never seen anyone get suspended for arguing balls and strikes, so we'll see what happens."
San Diego manager Andy Green defended his player while citing a lack of recent run-ins, per the AP:
"In Manny's case, he was ejected the last time in 2016. This isn't a habit. This is not who he is consistently. If we were running into an issue with any of the guys were getting ejected, they're not on the field of play, he knows what his impact is for us. There are moments you have to allow that opportunity to let out some frustration, back a guy up because you love his passion."
Of note, Welke previously ejected Green on April 2 for arguing after Machado was called out for batter's interference on a pop-up.
Machado signed a 10-year, $300 million contract with the Padres this past offseason, which at the time was the largest free-agent deal in league history. He has hit .264/.346/.464 with 14 home runs and 40 RBI in 71 games.