Both benches cleared Friday night at Fenway Park during the latest scuffle between baseball’s Hatfields and McCoys in another testy game that featured four Boston ejections – including three managers.
Red Sox first baseman Mike Carp was hit on the arm by a fourth-inning pitch from Tampa Bay ace David Price, who also plunked slugger David Ortiz on the hip in the first inning.
Carp glared out at the mound, shouting and pointing at Price, but was restrained by Rays catcher Jose Molina as players from both teams charged out of the dugouts and bullpens.
There was some pushing and shoving, but no punches were thrown during the scrum between the mound and home plate. Molina ended up restraining an angry Ortiz.
The AL East rivals have a long history of bad blood, including a bench-clearing dustup Sunday at Tampa Bay that led to the ejection of three players: Yunel Escobar and Sean Rodriguez of the Rays, and Jonny Gomes of the Red Sox.
That trouble started when Escobar advanced to third base on defensive indifference with the Rays leading 8-3 in the seventh inning. Boston players, mired in a long losing streak at the time, took exception, and Escobar began pointing and shouting toward the Red Sox dugout.
Both teams came onto the field and there was pushing and shoving, but order was restored a few minutes later.
This time, both clubs were warned by the umpires after Price hit Ortiz with a pitch in the first inning. That incensed Boston manager John Farrell, who came out to argue and was ejected.
Bench coach Torey Lovullo took over for Farrell and later became irate when Price wasn’t tossed after hitting Carp. Lovullo threw down his cap during an extended argument with plate umpire Dan Bellino and crew chief Jeff Kellogg.
Third base coach Brian Butterfield took over as acting Boston manager – but not for long.
In the sixth, Red Sox starter Brandon Workman threw a high pitch behind Rays slugger Evan Longoria, who was visibly upset. Longoria and Boston catcher A.J. Pierzynski had a conversation at home plate, and a handful of players from both dugouts ventured a few steps onto the field, but no trouble ensued.
Workman was ejected, and Butterfield was automatically tossed along with him.
At least they had plenty of company in the clubhouse.
From there, hitting coach Greg Colbrunn filled in as acting manager, becoming the fourth Red Sox skipper of the night.