The Cubs and Marlins delivered a benches clearing incident Tuesday night at Wrigley Field but instead of tempers boiling over, a ticklefight ensued a few feet from home plate.
Lewis Brinson lined a hard single to right field off Cubs pitcher Rob Zastryzny in the fourth inning. Ben Zobrist came up firing with an absolute beauty of a throw to home plate to nab Derek Dietrich trying to score:
Benches cleared at Wrigley 😤 pic.twitter.com/4XQmUjJvCL— Cubs Talk (@NBCSCubs) May 9, 2018
"He was out by 15 feet and that's just where the play took me," Caratini said. "I didn't really like the way he shoved me and that's what I told him: 'You didn't need to do that. You were out by quite a bit.' We exchanged some words and that was it.
"I thought it was unecessary because he was out by so much, but I understand it's just part of the game, so I let him know that and we move forward."
Some things to focus on:
First off, what a throw from a guy that's about to turn 37 later this month and has played a lot more second base than outfield since joining the Cubs.
Secondly, it was interesting and amusing to see the bullpen doors open and both teams come sprinting out from under the bleachers to join the foray. A couple years ago, a benches clearing incident would've just resulted in each team's bullpen coming from a couple hundred feet down the foul line.
Willson Contreras was MOVING out of the Cubs dugout, looking like he was ready to hand out some serious punishment to protect his fellow catcher.
But instead of an actual fist fight, however, we got some comedy gold, like Bryzzo teaming up to play-fight with former teammate Starlin Castro.
First there was Kris Bryant tickling Castro:
Shortly after that moment, Anthony Rizzo jokingly pushed Castro from behind and the two players laughed it off:
"I pushed Starlin," Rizzo said, smiling, and acknowledged he didn't even know Bryant tried to initiate a tickle fight.
Javy Baez loved it all:
Nobody was ejected and the coaches and umpires were able to quickly gain control of the situation, which couldn't have been that difficult when opposing players are out there tickling each other and laughing.
"It was rather entertaining," Joe Maddon said. "I mean, there was no reason for it. I was surprised. There was no animosity. It wasn't a dirty play, it was nothing. He was out by 52 feet, we got the ball, he bumps into him, play over, that's it.
"It's kind of surprising. I don't think there was anybody who really got heated. Probably required tickling more than it did punches."