Last night’s game between the LA Dodgers and the Arizona Diamondbacks will go down in the record books as a 5-3 win for the Dodgers. This game was not as simple as that however, it doesn’t even begin to scratch the surface of what fans who watched the game were able to witness.
Resembling a hockey game played on a baseball diamond, six players were ejected as a result of brawling with their opponents. No one was seriously injured during the fight, although there are several who are likely to be feeling a little sore as they wake up today.
As of yet there is no word yet as to what sanctions the MLB will take as far as punishment for the six ejected players. Suspensions seem likely, especially as this isn’t the first time we have seen the Dodgers in a brawl this year. The previous one resulted in newly acquired Zack Greinke breaking his collar bone.
Tensions began brewing when Ian Kennedy hit rising star Yasiel Puig, resulting in a chorus of boos from the fans. Believing in an eye for an eye, the Dodgers responded in their half of the inning by drilling Miguel Montero. Seemingly evening the score and allowing the show to go on, things took a turn for the worst when Kennedy drilled Dodgers’ pitcher Zack Greinke.
Baseball players don’t respond well to pitches that target the head. They also don’t like when pitchers get hit. When you put the two together, the result is the bench clearing brawl we saw in LA between the Dodgers and the Diamondbacks last night. The full video of the brawl can be seen below.
Hitting batters is part of the game, the players understand this, however there is an exception when the head is the target. Utility man Skip Schumaker of the LA Dodgers described his emotions towards the incident. “I’ve never seen a pitcher throw at two different guys’ heads before. It’s dangerous. It’s different if it’s a beanball war. I’ve been part of those before. I get it. It’s part of the game. I like it. It gets guys going, gets the fans fired up. I get all that. I love it. But when you start throwing at guys’ heads, that’s different.”
This isn’t the first time Ian Kennedy has been accused of intentionally targeting the heads of Dodgers. Just last year he twice through up and in against ace Clayton Kershaw, missing both times. The first attempt was a ball up and in and the second actually went behind Kershaw to the backstop. He maintains that he was simply trying to pitch in, and would never target anyone’s head.
Making this brawl all the more interesting is the fact that we get to watch these teams do battle many more times this season. The two teams are scheduled to meet eleven more times during the regular season. The teams will be high strung and the tension will be high for the future meetings.
The LA Dodgers won their game against the Diamondbacks 5-3 last night in LA, however the brawl will be what is remembered about this game. With eleven more meetings against each other still on the schedule, the odds are that Kennedy will once again take the mound against the Dodgers this year. That will certainly be a tense atmosphere, and should he hit another batter, intentional or otherwise, who knows what will happen.
Follow me on Twitter @CharlieGille
Senior Sports Editor
The Guardian Express
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