Carlos Rodon’s kiss draws Yankees fans to jostling arena

Carlos Rodon responds to boos by a Yankees fan by blowing a seemingly sarcastic kiss at them on July 19, 2023, at Angel Stadium.
Michael Bennington
Thursday July 20, 2023

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ANAHEIM, Calif. — Starter Carlos Rodon likely won’t be winning over many Yankees fans after a losing performance against the Angels during Wednesday’s game. However, he made it worse by blowing a kiss to jeering Yankees fans, who jostled to react with anger and sarcasm on social media.

Carlos Rodon turned frustrated with himself after giving up a walk and then a home run in both the first and second innings in Anaheim during the 7-3 loss to the Angels. As he returned to the dugout after the second inning, he faced boos from the stands behind the dugout and an irate Yankees fan shouted at him.

But Carlos Rodon responded to the Yankees fan by blowing a seemingly sarcastic kiss into the stands near the visiting dugout of Angel Stadium. Amidst giving up six runs in 4 1/3 innings, the team’s significant offseason acquisition seemed to express his frustration.

The Amazon Prime broadcast cameras captured the gesture as Carlos Rodon was leaving the field after the second inning, in which he allowed his second home run of the game.

The left-handed pitcher seemed to glance at the crowd, bringing his pitching hand to his lips, and gestured as if blowing a kiss into the stands. Carlo Rodon’s departure from the field after that inning drew the attention of many Yankee fans in the crowd, and he seemed to be receiving some verbal criticism, as noted by Yankees analyst David Cone during the broadcast.

Carlos Rodon tries to justify the act

In the post-game interview, Carlos Rodon acknowledged the incident and admitted that perhaps it would have been wiser to ignore the frustrated fans’ reactions.

Carlos Rodon told reporters that he believed blowing a kiss was the best reaction he could muster at the moment. But in hindsight, he acknowledged that it might have been better not to react at all. The Yankees starter described the outing as frustrating and admitted that he showed his frustration during the second inning.

Carlos Rodon mentioned that he didn’t pay much attention to the specific words uttered by the fan. He acknowledged that the fan had a right to be angry, and he shared that frustration himself, directing it toward his own performance. The Yankees starter admitted that he was upset with his own performance, which led to the gesture of blowing a kiss.

At the time Carlos Rodon made the gesture toward the stands, the Yankees were behind by a score of 4-0, and by the time he left the game, they were trailing 6-0.

After his first three starts with the Yankees, his ERA has reached a disappointing 7.36. Throughout the series against the Angels, Yankees pitchers experienced an overall frustrating day, with incidents like Carlos Rodon’s sarcastic kiss and Tommy Kahnle’s reaction to a frustrating outing in the dugout.

Yankees manager is cautious about the kiss episode

Aaron Boone mentioned that everyone has their unique ways of expressing frustration, stating that he used to throw his helmet or get upset, but it varies from person to person. He emphasized the importance of being authentic and acknowledged that the players care deeply about their performance.

Aaron Boone commented that in baseball when players face challenging situations and experience setbacks, their emotions can manifest in different ways. The Yankees manager also emphasized that while it’s essential for players to maintain a level of professionalism, individual reactions can vary based on personal emotions and circumstances. Carlos Rodon’s kiss is an example of it.

The Yankees secured Carlos Rodon with a significant six-year, $162 million deal in December, but his debut was postponed until July 7 due to a forearm strain and later back tightness.

His initial two starts of the season after returning from the injured list hadn’t been as successful either. In the early stages of his Yankees career, Carlos Rodon suffered defeats in both starts, giving up six earned runs in his initial 10 1/3 innings before his disappointing performance on Wednesday.

Since the All-Star break, the Yankees’ performance as a team has not improved, as they have lost five out of their last six games. Prior to Wednesday’s game, the Yankees were in sole possession of the last place in the American League East and were trailing by three games for the final wild-card spot.

Aaron Boone expressed his desire for Carlos Rodon not to make that gesture. He mentioned that the starter appeared frustrated and blowing a kiss might have prevented him from responding differently, like yelling at a fan.

Boone addressed Carlos Rodon’s gesture, stating that it wasn’t the desired reaction from a player, and that they had discussed it previously. He acknowledged that in the heat of the moment, emotions can lead to actions one might not intend to engage in. Boone hoped that Carlos Rodon would take it as a learning experience and move forward. However, he emphasized that despite the frustration, it was better to avoid escalating the situation into a shouting match or making decisions that could be regretted later.

carlos-rodon-new-york-yankees
AP Photo/ Ashley Landis

Yankees fans slam Carlos Rodon for his kiss

However, the Yankees fans don’t forgive the starter and took to social media to deplore his act.

What do you think? Leave your comment below.

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2 thoughts on “Carlos Rodon’s kiss draws Yankees fans to jostling arena

  1. You’re forgiven, Mr. Rodon.
    I’m willing to turn the other cheek: once.

    Let this serve as Mr. Rodon’s only warning to NEVER commit such an egregious act in the Bronx.

    Matter forgiven and forgotten.

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