Tuesday, May 17, 2016

 

Jose Bautista Getting Cold-Cocked Was Just One Part of This Bench-Clearing Brawl

The Blue Jays and Rangers have some slow-marinating beef from last fall's American League Division Series, when Jose Bautista bat-flipped his way into Texas villainy. It took seven games this season for things to really buble over, but boy did they ever on Sunday.

It all began in the eighth inning, when the Rangers' Matt Bush hit Batista with a pitch.

Two batters later, Justin Smoak grounded to third in what looked like an inning-ending double play, before Bautista went barreling into second, getting a piece of second-baseman Rougned Odor's leg with a hard slide.

Odor did not like that:

Both benches cleared, creating a 50-plus-person melée in shallow centerfield, and everyone-including the middle-aged coaches-got themselves in on the action. In the end, eight players and coaches were ejected from the game through this and other incidents, and the play was ruled a double play as Bautista was charged with interference.

"[I was] pretty surprised, and obviously that's the only reason he got me," Bautista told MLB.com of Odor's punch. "He got me pretty good, so I have to give him that. But it takes a little bit of a bigger man, I guess, to knock me down."
I guess he had to save face somehow:

The question is, how does it stack up against Nolan Ryan v. Robin Ventura?

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