Tensions continue to mount between the Mariners and Astros at T-Mobile Park as the playoff game enters its final days.
As the two American League West rivals faced off in Seattle on Wednesday night, Houston reliever Hector Neris mocked Mariners All-Star Julio Rodriguez and then taunted him in the sixth inning, leading to both sides The bench is cleared.
After three straight runs, Neris struck out Rodriguez to end the sixth inning.
But the right-hander wasn’t content with just the big punch at the end of the inning.
Neris rushed toward Rodriguez, who was walking back to the home dugout, and said something to the outfielder, but it’s unclear what he said.
First baseman Jose Abreu then pushed the reliever toward the third-base dugout, but at that point, an angry Rodriguez turned toward Nerys, leaving the bench and bullpen empty.
Rodriguez was seen yelling at Nerys, even though Nerys had returned to the dugout.
Eventually, amid the chaos at the foul line, Neris tried to rejoin the fray and appeared to talk to Rodriguez, but his Astros teammates grabbed him and pushed him back into the dugout.
Despite all the chatter and emotion, no one threw a punch during the heated scene.
It’s understandable why the team would be extra excited heading into this game, as the Astros hold just a half-game advantage over the Mariners for the final wild-card spot in the American League.
The strikeout was a bit of redemption for Nerys, who had allowed two hits, including a home run, in four previous at-bats against Rodriguez.
In the second bizarre incident in as many days in the Houston-Seattle series, Mariners pitcher George Kirby was hit by a ball thrown back onto the field by a fan during Tuesday’s game.