Rivalry or rumble?

I believe competition can be a healthy thing, especially when applied to athletics. Rivalries between competitors make events more exciting for fans and players alike, even more so in professional athletics.

However, if Saturday’s American Legue Conference Series (ALCS) Game 3 is any indication, sometimes rivalry can be taken too far. I have heard of the heated rivalry between the New York Yankees and the Boston Red Sox, but I never would have imagined they’d start tossing around senior citizens.

Players from both the Yankee and Red Sox were fined for their actions. It all began when Boston’s pitcher Pedro Martinez hit New York’s Karim Garcia with a pitch. Next thing you know Garcia is making vicious slides in the general direction of Boston’s second baseman Todd Walker.

The tension clearly mounted between the two teams. All it took was a pitch by the Yankee’s Roger Clemens to Manny Ramirez that was at most high and a bit inside. Ramirez started yelling and headed toward the mound with a bat in his hand. The benches emptied and Yankee’s coach Bob Zimmer, 72, charged toward Martinez, who basically picked him up by the head and threw him to the ground.

Then later in the ninth inning a bullpen fight involving Garcia, Yankee Jeff Nelson and a member of the Boston’s grounds crew broke out. Boston police are talking about possible assault charges being filed against the two players. What could this special education teacher by day, grounds keeper by night possibly have done to earn himself a Yankee-smackdown?

Because of the brawling in Game 3, a 4-3 victory for the Yankees putting them 2-1 in the series, they will be cutting off beer sales in the Yankees bullpen after the seventh inning. Losing your booze privaleges, that’s serious business!

The only contact here should be between bat, ball and glove. Take comfort in the fact that you all make more a year than I probably will in my lifetime. Play the damn game!