Monday, October 16, 2006

The decade's best brawls

Saturday's riot in South Florida got us thinking: what are the best brawls in recent memory? And we're not talking about that pussy shit in baseball where a batter gets hit by a pitch, approaches the mound, benches clear, reach-arounds are given, and the game goes merrily along.

No, we're talking the bad stuff. Ideally the criteria would be events that you would imagine happen only in prison, but frankly we couldn't find enough savage brawls like that.

But below are our top-5 brawls since 2000. Missed some? Don't agree? Feel free to add your own.

1. Basketbrawl, Nov. 19, 2004

The skinny: You know the story. Ron Artest fouls Ben Wallace. Wallace gets pissed and shoves Artest. Artest, at this point, has been ejected and goes to take a nap on the scorer's table. All's cool until a fan throws a cup of beer that hits Artest. Ronnie goes apeshit and goes into the stands with both guns blazin'. Teammates Stephen Jackson and Fred Jones are jealous that they're not in on this too, and they go tag-team it with Artest.

The aftermath: Artest gets suspended for the year, proceeds to cut rap album. Jackson was suspended for 30 games, while O’Neal received 25 games, which was later reduced to 15, and Anthony Johnson received five. For the Pistons, Wallace was suspended for six games.

The savagery scale (out of 10): 52. It doesn't get better than this! We can watch video of this mini riot over and over, and it won't get old. Our favorite is the fan who raises his fucking dukes to Jermaine O'Neal. This is a brawl of epic, epic proportions. With the fans, players, coaches all in on the action, we'd estimate about 100 people were involved. Awesome!

2. The U has a reputation to uphold, Oct. 14, 2006

The skinny: This so fresh that you don't need much of a reminder, but helmets swung, crutches flew and Miami was doing what they do best: causing trouble.

The aftermath: Thirteen ejections and 31 players -- 13 from Miami, 18 from FIU -- are suspended from the team's next game.

The savagery scale: 9. Anytime a player is using his helmet as a weapon, you know there's something wrong. This was a full-blown melee and both teams were completely out of control. Where was the cast of "CSI: Miami?"

3. Don Zimmer, meet Pedro Martinez, Oct. 11, 2003

The skinny: Yankees bench coach, 72-year old Don Zimmer, goes at then Red Sox ace, Pedro Martinez in Game 3 of the 2003 ALCS. Pedro shifts to the side and throws down Don Zimmer the way you'd expect a pro athlete to dispose of an overweight senior citizen. This sparks a
bigger brawl and the rest is history.

The aftermath: We couldn't find if there were suspensions or not, but we don't recall any. Zimmer apologized for his actions and the Yankees went on to the World Series, losing to the Marlins.

The savagery scale: 7. The brawl itself was nothing special, but anytime you see a Pedro Martinez fight Grandpa, that's pretty neat. Being in the postseason also earns this an extra point on the savagery scale.

4. Michael Barrett does not appreciate A.J. Pierzynski, May 20, 2006

The skinny: Pierzynski is running home, Barrett blocks the plate, A.J. collides with Barrett, ball comes loose, Pierzynski slaps home plate, Barrett reacts, slugs A.J. in the eye. (That folks is what we call a run-on sentence).

The aftermath: Barrett got a 10-game suspension, which was well worth it to give Pierznski a black eye.

The savagery scale: 6. No brawl really. Just catcher vs. catcher. It was cool because it was such a cleanly-landed punch and Pierzynski is such a douche-fucker, but that's really all.

5. The Tigers and White Sox don't think highly of one another, April 22, 2000

The skinny: Weaver plunks Carlos Lee in the sixth, and then Jim Parque retaliates by beaning Dean Palmer in the seventh. Palmer charges the mound and hurls his helmet at Parque just before he reaches him. Order is restored, but another round of beanings and bench-clearings takes place in the ninth.

The aftermath: All sorts of goods here. Sixteen ejections, 82 total games in suspensions and Keith Foulke, then with Chicago, had to get stitched up!

The savagery scale: 6. A good brawl indeed. All sorts of fighting and multiple bench-clearing episodes gets this brawl into the top-5. Also any instance of a player using part of the uniform as a weapon is certainly bold.


Anonymous said...

Im not sure if this was before 2000, and I could not find the video, but former Red Sox minor leaguer Izzy Alcantara had a pitch thrown up and in to him. He had a history with the pitcher so he kicked the catcher as hard as he could in the chest and sprinted out to the mound where he was surrounded by the opposing team and he had his fists up waiting to fight anyone willing to come near him. One of the better brawl videos I have ever seen.

Anonymous said...

heres the wikipedia info on Alcantara.

Alcántara was signed as an amateur free agent by the Montreal Expos in 1990. He made national news as as a minor leaguer in 2001 when he retaliated against Scranton/Wilkes-Barre Red Barons catcher Jeremy Salazar during a game. On July 3, 2001, Alcántara was hit by a pitch by Red Barons pitcher Blas Cedeño. [[1]] Feeling that he had been thrown at, he responded by kicking catcher Salazar in the face, karate-style, before rushing the mound. The pitcher wisely backed out of his way, and after momentarily trying to get anyone on the Red Barons to fight him, was engulfed in the ensuing bench-clearing brawl. Afterwards, Alcantara was given a 7-game suspension, and his career never recovered.

Zach Landres-Schnur said...

awesome! nice find, anonymous!

JMC said...

that video is UNBELIEVABLE. The Alcantara one I mean

The Fan's Attic said...

there was also that brawl with south carolina in a bowl was pretty good too.

Zach Landres-Schnur said...

nice call, Fan's Attic. lou holtz actually referenced that when talking about this miami/fiu fiasco.

shipp pac10 poy said...

hey i posted about the alcantara incident and i just created my own blog called east coast bias. even though im a boston resident, i can barely stand watching local sports news...especially now that bc is in the acc. i hate basketball season for this reason.

i know you are washington people here, but im sorry ucla is going to win the pac 10 this year.

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