Watch: Controversial MLB Star Sparks 1st Bench-Clearing Skirmish of the Season


Cincinnati Reds outfielder Yasiel Puig is no stranger to controversy when it comes to getting involved in, or launching, bench-clearing skirmishes.

He was also at the center of another one Sunday between the Reds and Pittsburgh Pirates.

This one was bizarre in that a whole lot of nothing went on for the few minutes until the end when Puig tore after a group of Pirates players and had to be restrained. Watch the video through until the end.

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It all started when Reds infielder Derek Dietrich drilled a 436 foot long home run off Pirates starter Chris Archer into the cheap seats in the second inning. Apparently, Dietrich admired it a little too long for Archer’s liking.

So the next time Dietrich came up, Archer threw a pitch behind Dietrich.

Reds manager David Bell immediately charged the mound to argue that Archer was throwing at Dietrich in retaliation for the home run.

“Any time another team or another player is intentionally trying to hurt one of our players, that’s the problem. It’s that simple,” Bell said, reported “It’s unacceptable, and we’ll always stick up for our players no matter what.

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Archer later denied that he was throwing at Dietrich, saying he “missed” his spot.

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Shortly after Bell ran on to the field to argue with the umpire, Puig was right behind him and got in Archer’s grill. That got everybody up from both benches and players, including Reds infielder Joey Votto and Pirates outfielder Melky Cabrera. A red-hot Puig had to be restrained, as well.

Meanwhile, there was a lot of pushing and shoving in the scrum on the field, but it didn’t appear that any punches were thrown.

Then, just when it seemed like everything had calmed down and the fight was breaking up, something set off Puig and he broke away from Votto and tore after several Pirates players including Archer, Trevor Williams and Francisco Cervelli, MLB reported.

Reds catcher Tucker Barnhart tried to stop his teammate and can be seen holding Puig back by his foot.

Eventually things settled down, but not before Bell, Puig, and Amir Garrett from the Reds and Keone Kela and Felipe Vazquez from the Pirates were ejected.

Last year Puig, while with the Dodgers, got suspended two games for a fight with the Giants Nick Hundley that sparked a bench clearing brawl.

No word yet on if there will be further disciplinary action on Puig or any others involved in the dust up.

Oh by the way, the Pirates won 7-5. Josh Bell and Adam Frazier hit home runs. Dietrich had two homers for the Reds.

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Dave is a lifelong sports fan who has been writing for The Wildcard since 2017. He has been a writer for more than 20 years for a variety of publications.
Dave has been writing about sports for The Wildcard since 2017. He's been a reporter and editor for over 20 years, covering everything from sports to financial news. In addition to writing for The Wildcard, Dave has covered mutual funds for Pensions and Investments, meetings and conventions, money market funds, personal finance, associations, and he currently covers financial regulations and the energy sector for Macallan Communications. He has won awards for both news and sports reporting.
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