Benches clear after John Lackey plunks Matt Joyce in Tampa

Both benches cleared in the sixth inning of Monday night’s Red Sox-Rays game in Tampa Bay after John Lackey hit Matt Joyce in the back with a 90-mph fastball.

Despite Lackey appearing to deny that he hit Joyce on purpose, the Rays outfielder was none too pleased with the hit by pitch. Joyce almost immediately dropped he bat and began to point and shout at Lackey before Jarrod Saltalamacchia got in his face and began a shoving match down the first base line.

Both dugouts then emptied out onto the field but no punches were thrown and no one was ejected in the scrum.

Joyce homered off of Lackey to lead off the first inning for the Rays, then smacked a long foul ball in the second and dropped his bat as if he thought he had hit a home run. The latter incident seemed to really irk Lackey, who was seen staring down Joyce and yelling towards the Rays dugout after the inning.

[The Big Lead]

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Pete Blackburn
Founder & lead editor of The Nosebleeds. Journalism graduate of Endicott College, Class of 2013. Boston born & raised. Lover of sports, binge television watching, music that doesn't suck & everything '90s. Not a tall drink of water. Follow @PeteBlackburn