New York Yankees vs Boston Red Sox: The Rivalry is Restored

BOSTON, MA - APRIL 11: Tyler Austin (Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)
BOSTON, MA - APRIL 11: Tyler Austin (Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images) /

After a long mellow period, the New York Yankees vs Boston Red Sox rivalry is back and it appears to be here to stay.

Everyone knows the New York Yankees and Boston Red Sox have been rivals since the Sox traded Babe Ruth to the Yankees. But for the last few years, it seemed as if the rivalry was dead. The two teams just played each other and there seemed to be no substance. The Yankees had younger players who didn’t really feel the rivalry and the Red Sox roster had turned over.

Well, now it is back. After a 14-1 loss to the Sox on Tuesday night the Yankees came into Wednesday’s game pissed off and ready to win. Everyone knows that in a rivalry game the unwritten rules of baseball aren’t in play. You slide spikes up, you can still steal even if you’re up a lot, if the other team hits a player with a pitch you do it back, you admire your home runs, etc.

Well, Tyler Austin did exactly that in the third inning. While he was running to second he slid spikes up and caught the leg of Red Sox shortstop Brock Holt. Holt and Austin exchanged some words which led to the benches clearing and the bullpens running in and swarming around second base. No punches were thrown, no one was thrown out of the game, and it was truly just an overreaction. But this was the beginning of what would later come.

In the seventh inning, Tyler Austin was at the bat with one out and no one on and the Yankees were up 10-6 with Joe Kelly on the mound for the Sox. Kelly decided to take it upon himself to give it back to Austin for the earlier events and he threw a 98 mph fastball straight at Austin.

Austin decided to slam his bat down and then charge the mound. Red Sox catcher Christian Vazquez held Austin’s jersey back in an attempt to slow him down and potentially stop the events before they happened. It did not stop Austin and only slowed him down as he charged straight at Joe Kelly on the mound who threw Austin down before being flipped onto his back which was when the benches cleared and surrounded the two in an attempt to break them up.

During the fight, Aaron Judge and Giancarlo Stanton were peacemakers as they shoved multiple Red Sox back in the direction of their dugout while punches were being thrown behind them. After it was all said and done, Tyler Austin, Joe Kelly, and Yankees reliever Tommy Kahnle were all ejected, as well as Yankees third base coach Phil Nevin.

The good news is the rivalry was never dead, and there is still bad blood between the two rivals which is great to see as a fan.

The Aftermath

Nothing has been announced by the MLB yet on if anyone will be suspended or for how long, but suspensions seem inevitable. Last year when the New York Yankees and Detroit Tigers fought each other and suspensions followed, Miguel Cabrera, who was at the center of the fight, was suspended seven games for inciting the fight. Gary Sanchez was suspended four games for throwing punches, Alex Wilson got four for intentionally hitting Todd Frazier. Austin Romine got two for throwing punches and Tigers head coach Brad Ausmus got one game because of Wilson’s pitch.

With that being said, the suspensions following this brawl will probably be rather similar. Tyler Austin and Joe Kelly will probably get anywhere from 6-10 games, Austin for inciting the fight and Kelly for intentionally hitting Austin. Tommy Kahnle may get anywhere from 1-3 games for yelling at the ump and Phil Nevin may get one or two for yelling at the Red Sox dugout and charging at them.

So who will play first base in the meantime with Austin suspended? With Greg Bird injured, the Yankees will go with either Miguel Andujar or Neil Walker. Last night Walker played first base and Tyler Austin was the DH while Andujar played third base. The best bet would most likely be Walker since he played first base last night.

Next: Why baseball's greatest rivalry is just getting started

Here is what the New York Yankees lineup may look like Thursday night with the recent events, assuming Tyler Austin gets suspended:

  1. Brett Gardner, LF
  2. Aaron Judge, RF
  3. Giancarlo Stanton, DH
  4. Didi Gregorius, SS
  5. Gary Sanchez, C
  6. Aaron Hicks, CF
  7. Miguel Andujar, 3B
  8. Neil Walker, 1B
  9. Tyler Wade, 2B