Los Angeles Dodgers’ right-handed pitcher Joe Kelly has been suspended for eight games due to the benches clearing incident with the Houston Astros that occurred Tuesday night. In addition, Dodgers’ manager Dave Roberts was handed a one game suspension, and Astros’ manager Dusty Baker was fined an undisclosed amount.
After the Houston Astros sign-stealing scandal was revealed this past offseason, a lot of noise was made from players around the league, especially from the Dodgers, their losing opponent in the “cheating season” of 2017. The two teams were not scheduled to face each other this year, but with the new 60 game schedule, the Dodgers came to Houston for the first time since Houston beat L.A. 13-12 in the incredible Game 5 of the 2017 World Series.
Kelly threw a fastball on a 3-0 pitch behind Alex Bregman’s head, and later taunted Carlos Correa on the way back to the dugout after striking him out. Although Kelly denied throwing at Bregman on purpose by saying, “My accuracy isn’t the best”, he threw inside at multiple Astros hitters and his obvious “pouty face” taunting of Correa has already become an internet sensation.
Dave Roberts will serve his one-game suspension immediately, while Kelly may appeal his. An eight-game suspension in a 60 game season, is as if he received a 22 game suspension, a hefty punishment even though the outspoken pitcher has received a similar punishment for intentionally throwing at the Yankees in 2018.