|Photo by Maddie Meyer (Getty Images)|
The first one happened in Denver yesterday afternoon. There's been some craziness in the series between the host Rockies and the San Diego Padres. Padre outfield Manuel Margot is out after getting one in the ribs, and early in the game yesterday Trevor Story of the Rockies and Hunter Renfroe of the Padres were both hit, though I believe unintentionally.
And of course, because the neanderthals are still in charge, this happened when Nolan Arenado stepped to the plate in the third.
Not to be outdone, when the Yankees and Red Sox renewed their rivalry last night, tempers got so heated the benches cleared twice.
I kind of get the anger from the Red Sox' perspective. Going in with your spikes is dangerous, but other than using his spikes, the Yankees' Tyler Austin did nothing wrong: he slid directly into second base, albeit ending up past the bag (though by the rule, you only have to be able to remain on the bag after completing the slide and since the force was already completed, the fact that he was off isn't an issue). That's why I don't take issue with the benches clearing in the aftermath of that play.
|Still image from Fox Sports|
But here's the rub. It's 2018, and we're still acting like thugs about things. I'm not saying you can't or shouldn't defend your guys, because in team sports you have to know that your teammates have your back. But there has to be a better way than by assaulting an opponent with a deadly weapon. That's what this is. Don't give me the "he hit him in the back, or on the rear, it's okay," bullcrap. Fastball velocity is... fast, and that can do some serious damage. And if it happens to get away and you end up hitting a guy in the head? We're talking potential life or death territory here.
I love a good donnybrook as much as the next guy, but this crap that precipitates these scrums needs to stop. One of these days, a guy is going to get seriously hurt by an intentional beaning... or worse. There's no place for assault with a deadly weapon in the game anymore. We should be beyond it. The league needs to start stepping in, though like I said last year, I don't see Rob Manfred doing anything about it.
If it were me, it's getting to the point where I'd start getting draconian on incidents like this. I'm talking month-long suspensions for the assaulting pitcher and multigame suspensions for the manager to hammer the point home. Suspensions for the fights resulting from beanings can stay where they are now, but players need to find a better way to police themselves.
It's an extreme example, but one day, someone is going to get killed by one of these retaliatory beanballs. What happens then? I'd rather get this removed from the game before something like that happens.