Benches cleared when Dodgers ‘Joe Kelly lunges behind Astros’ Alex Bregman, teases Carlos Correa

The benches were cleared at Minute Maid Park in Houston after the sixth inning of a highly anticipated showdown between the Los Angeles Dodgers and the Houston Astros on Tuesday night.

The tension was rooted in the erratic bottom of Joe Kelly in the sixth, which saw him throw a 3-0 fastball behind Alex Bregman and nearly hit Yuli Gurriel and Carlos Correa. With the stages empty due to the coronavirus pandemic, the transmission caught someone yelling at Kelly to “go back to the mound, mother …”.

After Kelly struck out Correa, leaving two runners stranded to maintain a three-run lead, the Dodgers reliever teased Correa and had a few words for him as he headed for the shelter. The two began to bite each other, causing both benches to clear without hitting each other. A warning was issued to both sides, and Astros manager Dusty Baker struck up a close and heated conversation with team boss Chris Guccione, although they were both wearing face masks.

Tuesday’s game marked the first time the Dodgers and Astros had met since it was revealed that the Astros had illegally stolen posters and reported them to their hitters by hitting a trash can in 2017, a method that spread through a World Series of seven games. win over the Dodgers. The Dodgers expressed a lot of anger towards the Astros during spring training. They tried to minimize the showdown once baseball resumed, but hours before the first pitch, Dodgers outfielder Joc Pederson acknowledged that there could be little additional motivation.

“The story is obviously out there,” said Pederson. “Everyone knows what is at stake and what happened. Because we are not fans, maybe sometimes the energy could be a bit lacking. I don’t think that is the case for this series.”

Kelly threw three consecutive balls to Bregman without any, one out and the Dodgers leading 5-2 in the bottom of the sixth. The fourth launch, at 96.4 mph, sailed behind him. Bregman didn’t say a word and Kelly yawned. He later threw four consecutive pitches at Gurriel, one of them a knuckle curve that almost hit him. The first two pitches to Correa, also knuckle curves, rejected him, but then Kelly threw four more of those breakouts and finally hit Correa on a low and far shot.

Correa, who drove in the first two races of the Astros, publicly rebuked Cody Bellinger during spring training, saying he spoke recklessly for saying that the Astros “cheated for three years” and that José Altuve “stole” an Aaron MVP Judge. Clayton Kershaw, who is on the injured list, was one of those seen with an open mouth to Correa after the benches were cleared.

Before the game, Dodgers manager Dave Roberts emphasized that there would be no retaliation.

“I don’t see that happening,” he said. “I just don’t want to take our focus off winning tonight and tomorrow.”