Memorial Day Research Paper

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Bryce Harper and Hunter Strickland’s throw-down on Memorial Day reminded us that the bad blood between two teams or players isn’t always settled by playing the game. Below are, in no particular order, the top 10 baseball brawls in recent memory.

Robin Ventura vs. Nolan Ryan, 1993

The altercation between Robin Ventura and Nolan Ryan is probably one of the most iconic brawls in baseball history. In a 1993 game between the Texas Rangers and the Chicago White Sox, Rangers pitcher Nolan Ryan plunked White Sox third baseman Robin Ventura with a high 90s fastball. After taking a couple of steps towards first, Ventura charged the mound to retaliate. As Ventura lowered his shoulder to hit Ryan, the future Hall of Fame fire-baller wrapped Ventura
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Padres pitching would go on to retaliate against him the entire game, throwing at or behind him in each of his four plate appearances on the day. Overall, the bad blood between Perez and the Padres resulted in four bench clearings, one all-out brawl, 14 ejections and several fans storming the field to join the fray.

Mo Vaughn vs. George Bell, 1993

The fight between Mo Vaughn and George Bell isn’t epic because it cleared the benches, it’s epic because of how one-sided the fight wound up being. In a 1993 game between the Boston Red Sox and Chicago White Sox, Red Sox pitcher Aaron Sele threw a pitch behind the head of White Sox outfielder George Bell. Naturally, Bell didn’t take to kindly to the pitch and charged the mound. After throwing a wild punch at Sele that failed to connect, Red Sox first baseman Mo Vaughn came flying in out of nowhere and absolutely leveled Bell, causing both benches to clear without much further confrontation.

Alex Rodriguez vs. Jason Varitek,
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Morgan, who was a bit of a hot head during his playing days, naturally charged the mound in retaliation. Morgan was only able to get one punch in before Marlins first baseman Gabby Sanchez came flying in out of nowhere to clothesline Morgan into the ground. The fight resulted in multiple suspensions and Morgan got an eight game suspension for instigating the brawl.

A.J. Pierzynski vs. Michael Barrett, 2006

After a fly ball out, White Sox catcher A.J. Pierzynski tagged up and tried to score from third base. Pierzynski bowled over Cubs catcher Mike Barrett on his way to the plate and emphatically slapped home to score. Pierzynski’s theatrics didn’t sit well with Barrett, who upon getting up from the collision, grabbed Pierzynski and punched him in the face. The benches cleared as a result, and four players, including Barrett and Pierzynski, were ejected from the game.

Chan Ho Park vs. Tim Belcher,
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