The Los Angeles Dodgers and Arizona Diamondbacks were involved in baseball's biggest bench-clearing altercation during the 2013 season. On Saturday, their Triple-A teams took things to a whole new level of crazy, engaging in a wild brawl that at one point spilled into the first row of seats behind home plate.
It happened in the top of the second inning with Albuquerque Isotopes (Dodgers affiliate) shortstop Erisbel Arruebarrena at the plate and Reno Aces (Diamondbacks affiliate) pitcher Mike Bolsinger on the hill. Arruebarrena, whom the Dodgers signed to a five-year, $25 million contract during spring training after he defected from Cuba, didn't take kindly to be being brushed back by Bolsinger and allowed the anger to stew a bit.
The purpose pitch likely stemmed from Arruebarrena's home run on Friday, in which he took nearly 35 seconds to round the bases.
Saturday's at-bat finished with Bolsinger striking Arruebarrena out. Immediately afterward, Arruebarrena got in catcher Blake Lalli's face and then shoved him, which set off the craziness.
Here's how it was described from the scene.
Isotopes infielder Erisbel Arruebarrena not happy about being thrown at. A few pitches later he struck out, then shoved Aces' Blake Lalli— Ben Ross (@BenjaminARoss) July 27, 2014
Benches cleared, dozens of players involved right behind home plate. Brawl went into the net and pushed net right into first row of crowd— Ben Ross (@BenjaminARoss) July 27, 2014
Really awful sight to see. Arruebarrena is going to be suspended for a long time.— Ben Ross (@BenjaminARoss) July 27, 2014
And here's another look.
In total, there were 10 ejections, including Arruebarrena, Lalli and former major leaguer Phil Nevin, who serves as Reno's manager.
Here's a complete list.
Obviously, a lot more were involved, and there should be some heavy duty suspensions to come from this brawl after the tape is reviewed. It's one thing for the players to settle their issues in a physical manner. It's quite another when it escalates to this point and puts fans in potential danger. It sounds as if there were no injuries, but this type of incident simply won't be tolerated.
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