Yankees: Aroldis Chapman starts postgame fight with terrifying brushback pitch


The Yankees and Rays let their bad blood spill out of the dugout after New York’s 5-3 win.

Let’s get the obvious covered right up top: If Yankees closer Aroldis Chapman really did brush back Rays thorn-in-our-side Michael Brosseau with 101 at his dome, two outs, and nobody on in the ninth of a 5-3 game, then he’s a dangerous idiot. That would be terrible behavior.

Alright. Whew. Exhale.

But, thinking rationally, Chapman has been wild his entire life, and triply so in four short appearances this season. In one of them, he didn’t record an out, flop-sweating all over the Mets and ruining our weekend. Most Yankees fans expected wildness when he emerged from the ‘pen Tuesday in a too-small jersey, attempting to break a six-game losing streak against the Rays.

When Chapman’s hardest stuff sailed past the chirpy Brosseau’s head, it was likely an accident (or, at least, an accident that it ever got that close). Intent aside, though, this woke up a rivalry that needed no tickling once again.

If intentional, that’s the worst look — and Chapman’s stare at Brosseau didn’t do him any favors here.

Aaron Boone had a lot to say about the Rays throwing inside a few weeks ago. Now, this. We understand the animosity, to say the least.

Brosseau entered the box with renewed intensity after his brush with death and swung over a few more hard ones to officially end the losing jag. No harm, no foul? Think again. Brosseau unhinged his jaw and the Rays and Yankees flaunted social distancing guidelines to scream at each other for a bit before ultimately being separated.

Kevin Cash, quickly becoming the 2020 equivalent of Terry Francona, did not mince words in the postgame scrum — he was also ejected after the contest wrapped.

Surprisingly, though, he did not direct his harshness at Chapman, specifically. Instead, Cash seemed to call the entire organization’s professionalism into question.

Poor coaching when a wild flamethrower throws a wild flame? In a pressure situation?

Once again, you’ll pass your judgment and we’ll pass ours. I don’t get the intention, but Chapman did himself no favors with the posturing. Cash made his position clear, bragging in the postgame sign-off that he had “a whole damn stable full of guys that throw 98 mph.”

This won’t be the last time you hear about this 101-mph slippage, and that’s the way the Rays want it. It’s up to the Yankees to prove they own the inside corner too in the coming days … but no, not like this.

Wednesday’s game will absolutely start with a warning.