BOSTON (CBS) — After serving his four-game suspension for throwing at Manny Machado’s head last weekend, Red Sox reliever Matt Barnes returned to the mound on Sunday night and earned a win over the Chicago Cubs.
Now he may get a chance to face Machado again as the Red Sox and Orioles open a four-game set at Fenway on Monday night. But last Sunday’s incident will not be in the back of Barnes’ mind should he get a chance to square off against the Baltimore third baseman during the series.
“It’s over and I’m ready to go,” Barnes told reporters on Monday. “We’re coming off a good series win and we’re trying to get another one against a division opponent.”
Barnes doesn’t anticipate any funny business in this upcoming series with the Orioles, but can’t answer for Baltimore manager Buck Showalter, who in the past has shown a distaste for the Red Sox.
“You’d have to ask them; I can’t tell you what the Orioles are thinking,” he said curtly. “We’re out there to play ball, to win a game and win a series. That’s where we stand.
“We’re trying to win a division, first and foremost, plain and simple. Every game counts,” added Barnes. “We’re playing the team in first place in the division right now, a big four-game series. We want to go out and win the series.”
Barnes said it was difficult to sit out and watch his teammates during his suspension, and is glad to be back in the fold.
“It was awesome, great to be back with the team,” he said of Sunday night’s outing, in which he retired the Cubs 1-2-3 in the eighth. “It wasn’t fun sitting at home. It was great to be out there, to contribute and win the series.”
Barnes is 3-0 with a 3.27 ERA and 11 strikeouts in 10 innings pitched on the season.