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Orioles star plunked, triggering melee

Published Jun. 8, 2016

BALTIMORE — Manny Machado had no intention of taking a 99 mph fastball in the back without retaliating.

So when the inevitable occurred, the Orioles infielder charged the mound with his fists clenched.

Royals RHP Yordano Ventura hit Machado with a pitch to spark a bench-emptying fray during Baltimore's 9-1 rout Tuesday night.

Ventura drilled Machado just under his No. 13 in the fifth inning as the two-time All-Star turned away. In the second, with Baltimore leading 5-0, the two exchanged words after Ventura twice threw inside pitches.

So before Machado headed to the plate in the fifth, he got a word of warning from manager Buck Showalter.

"I thought he was trying to hit him the at-bat before," Showalter said. "That's why I talked to him before he took his last at-bat. I wanted him to be aware of it."

An instant after the ball hit him, Machado charged. Ventura prepared by slinging aside his cap and glove, but Machado landed a solid punch before the pitcher tackled him.

"I don't regret anything," Machado said. "When somebody's throwing 99 at you, it's going to hurt. You can ruin someone's career."

Both dugouts and bullpens emptied before peace was restored. Machado and Ventura were ejected.

Ventura insisted the pitch was unintentional and implied that Machado has a reputation as a hot head.

FRESH START: Former Rays RHP James Shields is scheduled to debut for the White Sox tonight. He was acquired Saturday from the Padres.

PROSPECT TO DEBUT: Top Pirates prospect Jameson Taillon is scheduled to make his major-league debut tonight when he gets called up from Triple-A Indianapolis. The right-hander, 24, missed the past two seasons while recovering from Tommy John surgery and a sports hernia.

CUBS: RF Jorge Soler went on the 15-day disabled list with a strained left hamstring. OF Albert Almora, the team's first-round pick in 2012, was promoted from Triple-A Iowa.

GIANTS: C Buster Posey was scratched with an inflamed nerve in his right thumb.