There’s been a huge focus on the pace of play during baseball games this season. We can just assume that the clock was turned off during this bench-clearing brawl between Single-A squads for the Yankees and Phillies.
During a game at George M. Steinbrenner Field on Sunday afternoon, the Tampa Tarpons were hosting the Clearwater Thrashers for a Florida State League matchup. Tampa hurler Alex Bustamante hit Erick Brito with a pitch. Third base coach Marty Malloy thought there was some intent behind the HBP and needed to let his feelings be known. He exchanged words with Tarpons pitching coach Gerardo Casadiego at home plate, and that’s when things went up a notch:
Like with many baseball brawls, there’s a lot of standing around and jawing going on here. But, there were more than a few punches thrown (and landed) while things were heated.
My favorite part of all is how the booth played loud music during the altercation. After all, minor league games are family affairs, they need to drown out any cuss words/arguing that’s going on, right? Right.
Clearwater ended up getting the last laugh by winning this contest by a score of 12-3. These two squads had been squaring off every day since Tuesday, so maybe there was something building over the last few days and it just needed to come out in the finale. Sunday’s victory gave the Thrashers a series victory, winning four of these six meetings.
These teams don’t meet again until June 13th. Tampa will be visiting the Thrashers in Clearwater for a six-game set. Will cooler heads prevail by then or will things get heated again? Let’s circle our calendars so we can remember to find out.
You can reach Matt Musico at [email protected]. You can follow him on Twitter: @mmusico8.