Padres’ Luke Voit in hot water after controversial slide
Reds catcher Tyler Stephenson in concussion protocol after Padres DH Luke Voit collided with him at home plate
Newest San Diego Padres slugger Luke Voit is in hot water after an outrageous moment in Tuesday night’s game against the Cincinnati Reds.
Voit stood on base in the bottom of the first inning, with Jurickson Profar batting and one out on the board. When Profar doubled to left field, Voit headed for home as Reds shortstop Kyle Farmer threw the ball to catcher Tyler Stephenson.
Voit’s attempt to avoid Stephenson’s tag failed, and he collided with him instead. The bulk of his upper body and his right elbow met Stephenson’s head, and he went down hard.
After the collision, Stephenson exited the game. The Reds followed concussion protocol and placed him on the seven-day concussion list.
But the incident was already viral, with Voit’s name and the footage trending on Twitter:
And thus, the debate began…
Did Luke Voit intentionally collide with Tyler Stephenson?
Voit seemed contrite in his postgame media availability:
"“It ended up being a good throw and the ball took it in, and I tried to go around him. I think he went in to make sure he [got the tag]. I’m honestly surprised he held onto it. It was pretty impressive.I wasn’t trying to take him out … Hope he’s all right.”"
Of course, it would all seem more accidental if Voit hadn’t recently been embroiled in another sliding scandal. Last week, he slid into San Francisco Giants star Brandon Crawford, who then missed a game due to a wrist injury sustained in said incident.
That Voit is teammates with another player known for unsavory base-running tactics doesn’t help his or the Padres’ case. Manny Machado has been the subject of sliding controversy more than a few times in his career, which is not to conflate the two players, but it reflects badly on the team as a whole.