UPDATE: Tyler Collins of the Detroit Tigers will not be suspended for waving the middle finger at the Comerica Park crowd on Monday, according to Jason Beck of MLB.com.
Major League Baseball is reviewing an obscene gesture made by Detroit Tigers outfielder Tyler Collins during Monday's 7-3 victory over the Oakland Athletics, according to Katie Strang of ESPN.
Collins lost a pop fly in the lights and could never find it. After the ball hit the ground, Collins made an obscene gesture to the fans at Comerica Park. He was not charged with an error, but Justin Upton was after he failed to field the ball off the ground cleanly. The error allowed Athletics shortstop Marcus Semien to get on third base to open the sixth inning. Semien scored on a single by Billy Burns moments later.
“Nobody,” Collins said regarding who could see the ball. “None of us saw it,” Upton said.
The fans at Comerica Park started to boo Collins, and he flipped his lid and his finger. The center fielder, who started over Anthony Gose, waved his middle finger at the crowd and was yelling at the fans in the stands.
"To be at home and to hear boos after that play hit a trigger inside of me and I lashed out completely inappropriately," Collins said. "I'm absolutely embarrassed it happened and I'm very sorry to everybody in Detroit."
"Clearly, it's something that can't happen," Tigers manager Brad Ausmus said. "I spoke to Tyler immediately in the dugout, in the tunnel, after it happened and I spoke to him after the game. He regrets it."
Collins finished the game 0-for-4 with two strikeouts.
After the game, Collins said this about the incident in center field: “Nobody wants that ball to get lost less than me. That hurts. And to be at home and to hear boos after that play, it hit a trigger inside of me and I lashed out, completely inappropriately. I’m absolutely embarrassed that happened and I’m very sorry to everybody in Detroit. I just want you guys to understand that I love this team and I want to win so when we come home and get booed, it’s tough to swallow. But like I said, I apologize completely and I’m embarrassed at myself and I know my family is embarrassed at me and I’m sure these guys are, too, so I’m sorry that happened.”
Former Philadelphia Phillies closer Jonathan Papelbon was suspended seven games and an undisclosed fine for grabbing his genital area while facing the crowd in September 2014. While made that gesture, Papelbon shouted at the fans.
If Collins gets suspended, Detroit will have to play with a 24-man roster until the suspension is lifted. If Collins gets sent to the minors prior to serving his time for the crime, he will have to take the punishment once he returns to the majors at some point in his career.
Only time will tell for Collins and his possible suspension from Major League Baseball. However, it is important to note that Collins dealt with the situation in an adult manner after making a big mistake.