Baltimore Orioles’ Manny Machado rumbles Ventura to the dirt

Jun 6, 2016; Baltimore, MD, USA; Baltimore Orioles shortstop Manny Machado (13) jogs to the dugout after the top of the second inning against the Kansas City Royals at Oriole Park at Camden Yards. Mandatory Credit: Evan Habeeb-USA TODAY Sports
Jun 6, 2016; Baltimore, MD, USA; Baltimore Orioles shortstop Manny Machado (13) jogs to the dugout after the top of the second inning against the Kansas City Royals at Oriole Park at Camden Yards. Mandatory Credit: Evan Habeeb-USA TODAY Sports /

Manny Machado charged the mound and a bench-clearing brawl ensued after the Baltimore Orioles’ third baseman was hit in the back by Kansas City’s Yordano Ventura.

Make no mistake about the fact that the Baltimore Orioles’ Manny Machado was 100% justified in being angry after he was hit in the back by Kansas City’s Yordano Ventura. Keep in mind that this goes back some time, as Ventura had thrown at Machado and other Orioles last season as well (including Chris Davis). Furthermore it wasn’t the first time in this game that he had thrown at Machado. Furthermore it’s not as if Ventura’s never caused anything like this before – last night’s fight looked tame compared to the ones he caused with Anaheim and the ChiSox.

Ubaldo Jimenez gave the Orioles a so-so start in a sense, but he certainly pitched well enough to put the team in a position to win. Jimenez’s line: 5.0 IP, 9 H, 1 R, 3 BB, 4 K. The Birds jumped on Ventura early as Machado’s RBI-double in the first inning gave the O’s a 1-0 lead. Trumbo added a two-RBI double, and Schoop an RBI-single to run it to 4-0 by the end of the inning.

Odds are that set the tone for Ventura’s later actions. And it didn’t stop; Ryan Flaherty hit a solo homer onto Eutaw St in the second, and the rumble was on. Kansas City did walk in a run in the second inning, however that’s the only way they were able to score. They score their runs in one’s, whereas the O’s do it the “AL East way” with a bit more power and pizzazz. 

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  • Following the brawl, in which both Machado and Ventura were ejected, Trumbo came up again and promptly smacked a two-run homer. He was followed in the order by Davis…who smacked a solo shot. One inning later, Adam Jones hit a solo home run, and the final score was 9-1. With the win, the Orioles have taken the first two games of this series with Kansas CIty.

    However the main event of the night of course was the rumble near Russell St. Machado immediately dropped the bat and his helmet and charged Ventura, who threw his glove and hat aside and was ready to fight. And there’s a reason he was ready…he knew he had thrown at Machado on purpose.

    Machado landed at least one major punch in the melee, knocking Ventura to the ground, before the dugouts and bullpens emptied. Even after what resebled semi-order was restored, Ventura still appeared ready to fight to the death. Again, make no mistake about the fact that this was intentional. It’s not even arguable. For his part, Ventura said after the game that the pitch just got away, and he doesn’t feel he should be suspended (quote courtesy of Ryan Baillargeon,

    "I don’t think that should be in order. My plan was to pitch inside and one got away. And things happened, and benches cleared. I just have to protect myself and defend myself. I just can’t stand there."

    An interesting take for sure. In general, we here at Birds Watcher try not to take sides even though we cover the Orioles exclusively. However this was pretty blatant. There’s absolutely no defending Ventura on this – or his comments after the game, which came off as fairly gutless. You cause a melee like that and all you can say is that the pitch got away?

    More from Orioles News

    Manager Buck Showalter was clearly not happy with what had occurred in his news conference after the game, and he didn’t really mince words (quote courtesy of Roch Kubatko, MASNsports):

    "I thought he was trying to hit him the at-bat before. That’s why I talked to him before he took his last at-bat. I think he signaled breaking ball and shook to fastball. No, I don’t like when any of my guys are put in harm’s way, especially a guy throwing that hard and having some problems with his command tonight. But not the first time. Obviously, it must be something that’s OK because he continues to do it. It must be condoned. I don’t know."

    When asked later on if he thought this would carry over into tonight, Showalter simply answered “Bring it on.” The part about Ventura shaking off his catcher when he called for a breaking ball is incredibly interesting. Mind you that in fairness that’s what Showalter said he saw and so forth – and Ventura and his catcher would deny that. However if that’s true it’s pretty incriminating. The entire thing is pretty incriminating, and I would suspect that Ventura’s teammates are pretty embarrassed by it.

    Numerous Orioles players (and Showalter) expressed support for what Machado had done after the game. There are people who will say that Machado started the fight by charging the mound – and it’s easy for facts to become nebulous in these situations. But keep in mind that if Machado drops the bat and goes to first base, Ventura’s in no way held accountable. He isn’t ejected, and he isn’t given the discipline that will undoubtably come down from the league in the next few days.

    Unfortunately, Machado will also receive a suspension. However you have to hope for the Orioles’ sake that it’s lenient. Machado was the victim in this. And regardless of Kansas City’s manager neglecting to say who was at fault in the situation, you don’t blame the victim. So for the record, am I saying Machado was justified in charging the mound? Yes, that’s exactly what I’m saying.

    Next: Baltimore Orioles: Mike Wright benefits off his second chance

    The series concludes tonight, hopefully without further incident. Chris Tillman will be on the mound for the Birds, and he’ll be opposed by Kansas City’s Edinson Volquez. Game time is set for just after 7 PM.