Chris Woodward Walks Back Digs at Yankee Stadium, Gleyber Torres

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It’s a cliche in sports that is just as timeless and easy to refute as the “hey, you never played the game, so how can you criticize me?” routine. Any time you hear a sports figure, in this case Texas Rangers manager Chris Woodward, rip an opponent for besting them in a manner that seems kind of cheap or easy, well, the response is obvious and natural.

If what the other side did is so easy (in this case Yankees SS Gleyber Torres homering to right field in his home stadium) then why couldn’t your side stop them?

Woodward slammed Torres’ game-winning walk-off home run on Sunday, which came off his bat at 106.5 mph and traveled an estimated 369 feet, by calling it “an easy out in 99% of ballparks… He just happened to hit it in a Little League ballpark.”

With an extremely elite exit velo like that, the flyball that won game one of the Mother’s Day doubleheader would have been a home run in 26 of 30 MLB ballparks, according to Statcast.

It’s worth noting that the Texas Rangers themselves also benefited from a pair of homers to the short porch during the Sunday twin bill.

Woodward, seeing the error of his ways, walked back the walk off remarks yesterday. He got a lot of flak for slamming this elite cathedral of baseball, as Yankees hit out at him hard. Understandably so too.

“Probably bad words on my part,” he said.

“I gave it a layup for a lot of people. But listen, I meant no disrespect, obviously, to this place. And it’s obviously a world-class organization, ballpark.

“I talk about it as always being like one of my favorite places to come play, but I understand why Yankee fans will get upset about it. That’s why I love them.”

Indeed New York fans, of both teams, are some of the most passionate in the world. Woodward continued on:

“I adore the city. The ballpark is probably one of my favorite places to come. They’ve got a short right field. They always have.”

“Honestly, it was back to the old park. And that’s kind of what makes this place unique in a lot of ways. And hats off to Gleyber. Man, he hit that ball hard.”

Smart move by Woodward there.

Paul M. Banks is the owner/manager of The Bank (TheSportsBank.Net) and author of “Transatlantic Passage: How the English Premier League Redefined Soccer in America,” as well as “No, I Can’t Get You Free Tickets: Lessons Learned From a Life in the Sports Media Industry.”

He has regularly appeared in WGNSports Illustrated and the Chicago Tribune, and he co-hosts the After Extra Time podcast, part of Edge of the Crowd Network. Follow him on Twitter and Instagram.

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