The Los Angeles Dodgers earned a walk-off victory over the Milwaukee Brewers in the 13th inning of Game 4 of the National League Championship Series, but a lot of the talk after the game was on a controversial play that caused the benches to clear in the bottom of the 10th.
Manny Machado hit a routine ground ball to Orlando Arcia, and as he ran through the bag he appeared to have gotten his left foot tied up with Brewers first baseman Jesús Aguilar.
Aguilar took exception with Machado, which caused the benches to clear although nothing escalated more than a few words exchanged.
Brewers All-Star outfielder Christian Yelich was not happy with Machado after the game, calling him a ‘dirty player’ as he believes Machado was attempting to purposely injure Aguilar, via James Wagner of the New York Times:
“You all could see how that unfolded. Everyone has their own opinion. He is a player that has a history with those types of incidents. One time is an accident. Repeated over and over and over again. It’s a dirty play. It’s a dirty play by a dirty player. I have a lot of respect for him as a player, but you can’t respect someone who plays the game like that. It was a tough-fought baseball game. It has no place in our game. We’ve all grounded out. Run through the bag like you’ve done your whole life like everybody else does. If it’s an accident, it’s an accident. On the replay to us, it clearly looks like you clearly go out of your way to step on someone. It just has no place in our game. It’s unacceptable. I don’t know what his problem is honestly. I’ve played against him for a long time. It has no place in the game.”
When Machado reached base in the 13th inning, he appeared to have apologized to Aguilar and the two hashed it out, but Yelich and many other Brewers players were clearly still unhappy after the game.
So too was manager Craig Counsell. “I don’t know,” he said when asked about the incident. “I guess they got tangled up at first base.” The question alluded to whether or not Machado was simply playing hard. “I don’t think he’s playing all that hard,” Counsell finished his remarks with.
The most important thing is that no one was hurt, but Machado’s reputation has taken a big hit in the NLCS. First with him being criticized for not hustling, then questionable slides into second base during Game 3 and now this.
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