Zack Greinke and the 10 Best MLB Bench-Clearing Brawls

Craig MoirContributor IIIApril 15, 2013

Zack Greinke and the 10 Best MLB Bench-Clearing Brawls

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    This past Thursday night, the Los Angeles Dodgers lost their $147 million pitcher, Zack Greinke, after he plowed into Carlos Quentin during a bench-clearing brawl.  

    Greinke will be out for at least eight weeks with a broken collarbone (via ESPN). 

    Baseball has been famous over the generations for brawls and fights that happen over a fastball inside, or a hard slider that seems to just get away from the pitcher. Sometimes it is nothing more than bad blood between two players.

    While fans may enjoy seeing the occasional fight, the ramifications are too huge with how valuable these players have become.

    Regardless, here are 10 of the best bench-clearing brawls you will see in Major League Baseball. Mostly, the only thing hurt in these fights were the players egos, which is more than we can say for Greinke and the Dodgers.

Honorable Mention: Zack Greinke Tries to Avoid Carlos Quentin

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    As stated in the opening slide, there were severe ramifications for both of these teams, with the Dodgers getting the worst of the deal.

    This will prove that no pitcher is built like a linebacker and should never lower his shoulder while fending off a rushing mad man.

Honorable Mention: Minor League Mayhem

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    Although this slideshow happens to be about major league bench-clearing brawls, I just couldn't pass up this major league move by Izzy Alcantara as an honorable mention.

    It's never a good idea to kick the catcher in order to get a head start to the pitcher.

    Izzy must have been dizzy performing the karate move, but I must admit, it was definitely worth showing once again. 

No. 10: Giants vs. Cards 1988

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    This was considered one of the most memorable bench-clearing brawls in San Francisco Giants memory. Bad blood between the Giants and St. Louis Cardinals was reincarnated after Will Clark barreled into Cardinals shortstop Jose Oquendo.

    What started with a slap on the head by Oquendo launched into an all-out brawl.

No. 9: Marlins and Nationals Get It on

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    If a brawl happens at a Florida Marlins game, does anybody hear a sound?

    It is amazing that not many fans got to see this exhibit of WWE madness when Washington Nationals outfielder Nyjer Morgan was clotheslined by Marlins first baseman Gaby Sanchez. The brawl seemed almost secondary.

No. 8: Nothing Like a Good Old-Fashioned Yankees vs. Red Sox Brawl

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    Maybe being one of the oldest rivalries has something to do with it, but the New York Yankees and Boston Red Sox always seem to entertain when a brawl happens.

    In this 2004 edition, Alex Rodriguez and Jason Varitek get up close and personal while bringing everyone out to join the fun.

No. 7: Tim Teufel Challenges Rob Dibble

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    Rob Dibble was one of the bad boys of the old-school Cincinnati Reds. There are not many major leaguers who would want to challenge him in a fight.

    Enter New York Mets second baseman Tim Teufel, who must have forgotten the memo and should have just taken his base.

No. 6: Did We Mention That the Yankees Love to Brawl?

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    The New York Yankees have such a rich history that it is inevitable that they have been involved in their share of bench-clearing brawls.

    In this 1998 version, Baltimore Orioles pitcher Armando Benitez is escorted to the dugout by Yankees outfielder Darryl Strawberry in what turned out to be quite a lengthy melee.

No. 5: Indians and Tigers Join the Fray

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    It took a while for this fight to develop, but Detroit Tigers outfielder Gary Sheffield might look back and come to the conclusion that he should have stayed at first base.

    Cleveland Indians pitcher Fausto Carmona might have been taunting him and wound up getting the better of the easily antagonized Sheffield.

No. 4: Another Yankees vs. Red Sox Classic

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    The pure love between the New York Yankees and Boston Red Sox was in full swing when Lou Piniella hauled himself through catcher Carlton Fisk while trying to score from second.

    Bill Lee separated his shoulder after Craig Nettles slammed him into the ground. There are so many fights between these two teams that I could have come up with a slideshow all for themselves.

No. 3: Pete Rose and Bud Harrelson

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    This is an earlier version of no love lost between the Cincinnati Reds and New York Mets, circa 1973 in the NLCS. 

    After Pete Rose tried to break up a double play by dropping Buddy Harrelson to the ground, an all-out brawl ensued. Mets fans showed Rose some love in the following frame when they peppered the field with debris, causing manager Sparky Anderson to take his players off the field.

    The real showcase was when Reds pitcher Pedro Borbon actually ripped apart a Mets cap with his own teeth (not shown). Now that's entertainment!

No: 2 Juan Marichal and Johnny Roseboro

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    Usually fights happen because of a player rushing the mound in some capacity. This bench-clearing brawl would begin a bit differently, however.

    L.A. Dodgers catcher John Roseboro tried to entice Juan Marichal of the San Francisco Giants by throwing a ball back to the pitcher which was too close for comfort. The second time he tried it, the result was not what he had expected.

    Marichal struck Roseboro with a blow to the head with his bat, opening a wound that would require 14 stitches. A 14-minute brawl followed, and Marichal was suspended for eight games and fined a whopping $1,750.

No. 1: Braves and Padres Take It to the Next Level

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    This was the typical case of an all-out brawl being interrupted by a baseball game.

    The Atlanta Braves and San Diego Padres combined for 14 ejections, including both managers. Even five fans were arrested for joining the fray.

    Benches cleared in the second, fifth, eighth and ninth innings after Padres pitchers threw four times at Braves pitcher Pascual Perez after he hit Alan Wiggins in the first. This was not just any brawl, this had to be where Vince McMahon got the idea for WrestleMania, which began in 1985.