Your youth baseball brawl roundup
It’s playoff season for youth baseball, which means managers, parents and players who act only a little crazy when they get a bug up their butt about something during the regular season now have the stakes raised high enough that the same bug will cause them to go ballistic.
Here are a few highlights:
DODGEVILLE, Wisc., July 26 — The winners of the losers’ bracket in the Ohio Valley Regional is going to the Babe Ruth Senior World Series because of a game-ending brawl between the two teams in the first game of the best-of-three championship.
About the only detail not being argued is that Noblesville (Ind.) came back from three runs down in the sixth inning to lead the Hammond (Ind.) Chiefs, 11-10. Oh, the only other detail not being argued is that Babe Ruth headquarters in Trenton, N.J., ruled both 16-18-year-old teams out of the tournament. In between, it gets messy.
According to the Noblesville coach, talking to the near-hometown Indianapolis Star, all three Hammond coach freaked the fuck out when the game-leading run was scored on an obstruction call against the Chiefs, and all three got ejected. With no adults left to coach Hammond, the umpires declared Noblesville the winner. The Noblesville coach said the teams lined up to shake hands, and while his team was “excited,” the Hammond team was in a rage, the flames being fanned by one of their coaches. A Chiefs player jumped one of the Noblesville players, and the brawl was on.
What happened in Dodgeville with the Chiefs, as re-enacted on ice. (NSFW language)
The Hammond coach copped to nothing, and in fact said he was trying to keep the peace and separate players, according to his interview with the near-hometown Northwest Indiana Times in Munster, Ind.
Meanwhile, the Dodgeville police said they arrested one fan on disorderly conduct charges, allegedly because he punched a Noblesville coach.
So congratulations to Cross Plains (Wisc.), which advances to the Babe Ruth Senior World Series for not punching anybody.
VALLEJO, Calif., July 21 — Vallejo Babe Ruth coach David Davis was booked in the local hoosegow on a charge of battery against a sports official. He allegedly punched a first-base umpire during the state 15-and-under championship tournament. Davis was arrested at the local police station as he was filling out an assault report — against the umpire, David Abbitt, a 26-year veteran.
Abbitt said Davis sucker-punched him — knocking him out and requiring him to be taken by ambulance to a hospital — as he argued a close call against the Vallejo team at first base. Davis, meanwhile, citing scratches on his arm he said were made by Abbitt, said he was only defending himself, and that the knockout punch never happened. Davis told the San Jose Mercury News:
[After the umpire kicked him out] Davis then describes a highly emotional situation between the two men, with alleged spitting, swearing, racial epithets and self defense.
“I thought it was a make-up call, so I went down to my knees and came up and he said ‘You’re outta here,’” Davis said, claiming that the knockout punch never happened. “All I did was defend myself. I just put my hands up as a reaction. Guy falls down, looks at me from the ground and puts on a tirade like he was hurt. It was weak and it was fake.”
Apparently there were no police or security at the July 18 game because of cutbacks by the city of Vallejo. After the Davis-Abbitt incident, somehow, some way, security was found for the tournament.
GURNEE, Ill., July 17 — Unlike the other two incidents, this was not a playoff game. But it doesn’t have to be one for tempers to get out of hand.
According to the Daily Herald of Arlington Heights, Ill., police were called after a fight broke out a 15- to 18-year-old Colt (Pony League) game. Two opposing players wrestled at the plate — a runner trying to score, and the catcher who tried to block him (without the ball in his hand) during the last out of the game. The umpires did not get involved, and player tempers cooled.
However, parents started screaming and fighting with each other. That’s when police were called. But no arrests were made. The presence of the authorities inspired a lovefest, according to the Herald:
[Gurnee Police Commander Jay] Patrick said the players on both sides hugged as the three cops left the field. The teams were not named.
“It could have really gone south,” Jacobs said. “But when (police) got there, everybody started to calm down quite a bit.”
For an incident like this, that counts as a happy ending.