We all saw this coming.
For those of you who don’t remember, the Houston Astros got in to some trouble this offseason after being outed as sign-stealing cheaters who legitimately stole a World Series from the Dodgers in 2017. They have, appropriately, been mocked beyond repute. One of my favorite Twitter accounts to follow is @AsteriskTour, the 2020 Astros Shame Tour, go follow now if you haven’t yet (also, follow @untimed_down while you’re there). Unless you’re on the Astros roster, or a fan with your head in the sand, most of us agree that the Astros have everything that’s coming to them this season.
This is where our hero, Joe Kelly comes in. Last night, the Dodgers played the Astros for the first time this season, and Kelly took it upon himself to show his displeasure. After falling behind 3-0 to Astros third baseman Alex Bregman, one of the most defiant Astros in the cheating scandal, Kelly buzzed one high and tight right past Bregman’s dome for ball four. After Bregman went to first, Kelly fired two pickoff attempts that, if not caught by Dodgers first basemen Max Muncy, would have caught Bregman square in the ribcage. The unwritten rules of baseball were in full affect.
The Dodgers reliever wasn’t done at that point. Kelly later faced Carlos Correa, who was as, if not more defiant than Bregman in response to the cheating scandal. Correa got a breaking ball thrown over his head before being struck out by Kelly. The post-strike period is where the fun began.
From the aforementioned @AsteriskTour Twitter feed:
The tongue, the pouty face, the “shut the fuck up” to end the performance. It’s all perfect. Mockery at the highest level to the biggest villain in sports today.
All of this eventually lead to “benches clearing,” which is usually pretty weak in general when it comes to baseball. However, with COVID rules in the MLB this season, any chance of any actual fights happening is even lower, so it’s all worthless. I’m just glad Joe Kelly stepped up, did his duty as a Dodger, and made the first of what I can only assume will be many spectacles of beaning Astros this season.
Edit: right after publishing this blog, the MLB announced Kelly has been suspended for eight games. CBS Baseball Writer Danny Vietti put things into prespective: