It was Old-Timers Night at Dodger Stadium on Tuesday, except instead of taking swings at pitches and running the bases, they were taking swings at each other and running their mouths.
It started when the Dodgers’ star rookie, Yasiel Puig, was hit in the face by a pitch in the sixth, which led to the Dodgers and pitcher Zack Greinke to retaliate in the seventh by hitting Miguel Montero. But when Ian Kennedy sent one toward Greinke’s head in the seventh, all hell broke loose with a benches-clearing brawl, and Puig was right in the middle of it.
But he was hardly alone. By the time he joined the scrum, there were veteran stars front and center in the mayhem, showing the kid how big-league brawling is done. And when we say veteran stars, we mean about 20 years past their primes (well, their baseball-playing primes, at least).
Dodgers manager Don Mattingly wrestled D-backs bench coach Alan Trammell to the ground. Dodgers hitting coach Mark McGwire grabbed D-backs manager Kirk Gibson by the front of his jersey, then did the same to D-backs third base coach Matt Williams.
It was a late ’80’s All-Star Game. It was the 1988 Dodgers-A’s World Series again, then the Giants-A’s Series from the following season.
And in the other corner, McGwire acting like he was having ‘roid rage flashbacks, and Gibson, a reputed hardass, looking like he might soil himself in the grip of the 6-foot-5, 200-something-pound Big Mac.
But on Tuesday night, it seemed plenty of Dodgers were listening, as plenty of players contributed to the mayhem, which resulted in six ejections, including McGwire, Gibson and D-backs hitting coach Turner Ward — and yes, Puig got tossed, too. Just check out the photos. But none of the young guys was mixing it up better than the graying geezers.
”Donnie was mad and I’m sure they’ll accept no culpability,” Gibson said.
For those of you keeping score at home, McGwire, Mattingly, Gibson, Trammell and Williams bring to the plate 1,623 home runs, 29 All-Star appearances and six World Series titles.
And yet each of them still is searching for his first knockout.
Check out the videos below to see how things escalated.