The benches cleared when A’s outfielder Ramón Laureano appeared to hear something Houston Astros hitting coach Alex Cintrón said coming out of the visitor’s dugout during the A’s 7-2 win on Sunday.
Laureano was hit by a pitch from Astros reliever Humberto Castellanos in the bottom of the seventh inning. When Laureano got to first base, Cintrón said something to him from the dugout. That’s when madness ensued.
Laureano and A’s catcher Austin Allen were ejected from the game, but no members of the Astros were thrown out.
A’s manager Bob Melvin said Laureano would have never gone over to the Astros dugout unless something extremely offensive was said.
“I think the league will know who it is, and that person should get suspended,” Melvin told reporters after the game. “Hopefully that’s the case, and nowadays without fans in the stands, and mics everywhere, my guess is they know who he is.”
Melvin was asked what was said to Laureano.
“I can't tell you that,” Melvin said.
Melvin was confused why Allen was ejected and nobody from the Astros was ejected despite the incident happening in front of the Houston dugout.
“I don’t know how we ended up getting a couple guys kicked out and it kind of came out of their dugout and I don’t understand it, it’s just how it worked out,” Melvin said.
A’s first baseman Matt Olson was on deck when it happened and rushed over to defend Laureano. Matt Chapman joined him. Olson said he didn’t want it to be a situation where it was Laureano against the entire Astros team.
“[Laureano] was hit a lot, I know it was a curveball, but when he started going down the line, we heard that things were said that weren’t right to him, and maybe someone even told him to come over to the dugout, so I think he was definitely provoked a little bit,” Olson said.
Laureano had been hit twice by pitches Sunday. The first one occurred earlier by Brandon Bailey in the bottom of the fifth inning. Bailey had been traded by the A’s to the Astros in 2017 for Laureano.
Olson admitted there was a lot of chatter going back and forth, so he wasn’t sure exactly what was said.
For now, Laureano and Allen were the only two ejected from the game, but soon we will find out if there is further discipline for others involved.
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For reference, Los Angeles Dodgers pitcher Joe Kelly had been suspended for eight games after throwing a fastball behind Astros’ Alex Bregman and another ball above the head of Carlos Correa on July 28.
Melvin said while he didn’t talk to everyone right after the game, the clubhouse appeared to have the same mindset as he did that Laureano was provoked.
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