The reigning AL MVP Jose Abreu was hit by a pitch from Detroit’s Alex Lange. The plunking might’ve been a retaliatory move after Tigers batter Isaac Paredes was hit by a pitch one inning prior. Abreu took his base and, as he tried to steal second base, he slid hard into shortstop Niko Goodrum.
Abreu and Goodrum exchanged words and the benches cleared with a bunch of pushing and shoving in the middle of the infield.
White Sox manager Tony La Russa suggested Abreu was intentionally hit.
“It seems they have issues when someone plays aggressively but not when they pitch aggressively and beyond the limits. The game is played two ways, not just one way,” La Russa said.
Lange said he was just reading the scouting report on where to pitch to Abreu.
“He’s leaning out over the plate. He sees I’m working away. Our report says finish up-and-in and that’s where I was going. Obviously, it wasn’t intentional. I’m pitching to my report,” Lange said.
Tigers manager A.J. Hinch backed his pitcher.
Chicago White Sox’s Jose Abreu, right, is held back by second base umpire Tim Timmons from Detroit Tigers shortstop Niko Goodrum (28) as Jeimer Candelario, second from left, tries to help in the ninth inning of a baseball game in Detroit, Monday, Sept. 27, 2021. (AP Photo/Paul Sancya)
“If you throw it out over the plate, he destroys you. We threw it inside and it hit him. He went in aggressively into second, (a) little old-school with the slide. Tensions got high, emotions got high and we’re all out on the field. .. I don’t think they hit us on purpose and I don’t think we hit them on purpose. Emotions just boiled over,” Hinch said.
Abreu wasn’t made available to the media.
The White Sox won the game, 8-7. Chicago already clinched the AL Central last week.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.