The Yankees and Tigers threw down in one of the more memorable brawls of the season on Thursday afternoon.
The drama started when Michael Fulmer hit Gary Sanchez with a pitch in the fifth inning. Sanchez had gone yard off Fulmer in his last at-bat. Yankees reliever Tommy Kahnle retaliated by throwing behind Miguel Cabrera in the sixth, and Kahnle and manager Joe Girardi were ejected.
Just as Aroldis Chapman was set to resume Cabrera’s at-bat, the Tigers slugger and New York catcher Austin Romine exchanged words. Cabrera shoved Romine, started throwing punches, and both benches cleared.
Here’s an alternate angle from the Yankees’ broadcast.
Cabrera and Romine were both ejected and Sanchez moved from DH to behind the plate.
Dellin Betances hit James McCann in the head with a pitch in the seventh inning that appeared to be unintentional. Betances was tossed nonetheless, as was acting manager Rob Thompson. The benches cleared again but nothing happened beyond players milling about the infield.
David Robertson replaced Betances and promptly hit John Hicks on the arm with a pitch. He was not ejected.
And then guess what happened in the eighth inning. Justin Wilson hit Todd Frazier with a pitch and the benches cleared again. This time there was a little more action as the players gathered around the plate, with Brett Gardner and Brad Ausmus jawing at each other as their teammates separated them. Wilson was ejected immediately.
Before Frazier was hit, there was also some discord in the Detroit dugout. Nick Castellanos and Justin Verlander were apparently upset at Victor Martinez for getting too chummy with Sanchez after the brawl. Castellanos and Verlander were then seen yelling at Martinez in the dugout.
Sanchez got Castellanos with a cheap blow to the gut during the fight.
Verlander summed up the afternoon's fiasco perfectly.
It will be interesting to see just how many suspensions are handed out in the aftermath of this one.