Before I begin, let me state that I am neither a Phillies fan nor a Giants fan. I live the sad life of a Mariners fan, so this article is in no way biased towards one team or the other.
On Monday, Major League Baseball handed out just one suspension from the brawl between the Phillies and the Giants on August 5.
That three-game suspension went to Shane Victorino from the Phillies, who many people believe played the biggest role in the fight. Victorino appeared to make the initial move to the mound and also tackled a Giants coach.
Victorino wasn't happy that he was the only one suspended, and I completely understand how he feels because there should have been multiple players from the Giants suspended as well.
Eli Whiteside should have been suspended for his attempt to tackle Placido Polanco. Rather than do his job and protect his pitcher, he left the umpires to do so while he went to go pick a fight with the first person he saw. If Victorino got three games, Whiteside should have gotten at least one, possibly two.
Ask Charlie Manuel about this, and like any good manager, he'll defend his player no matter what. Manuel claims that Ramirez and the Giants instigated the fight and should be the ones at fault; and that Victorino had no choice but to answer by approaching the mound.
However, if you watch the beginning of the fight, it's pretty clear that Victorino made the first step.
I also find it amazing that Pablo Sandoval came out of this without even a fine. I guess when the league was watching the tape, they missed the moment I would like to deem, "The Kung Fu Panda Punch." It was quick, but Sandoval clearly threw a punch and it is amazing that he got off clean.
I won't go as far as saying that Giants pitcher Ramon Ramirez should have been suspended for hitting Victorino. Even the fine might have been a little harsh. He hit a batter, it's baseball—batters get hit on a daily basis. For all we know, the classic, "the ball just got away from me," excuse could have been entirely valid.
I was quite surprised that Victorino was the only one suspended. I've seen the fight on replay at least 10 or 15 times, and every time I see convincing evidence that Victorino shouldn't have been the only one suspended.
Next time, Major League Baseball needs to watch the tape of a fight a little more thoroughly before deciding on the repercussions.