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Astros, A’s brawl after Ramon Laureano is hit by pitch

The Oakland Athletics and Houston Astros engaged in a bench-clearing brawl Sunday that defied MLB’s coronavirus protocols and will likely lead to multiple suspensions.

A’s outfielder Ramon Laureano charged the Houston dugout after being hit by a pitch in the back for the second time Sunday, in the bottom of the seventh inning by Humberto Castellanos. He was hit earlier in the game by Astros pitcher Brandon Bailey.

Laureano first barked at Castellanos before engaging in an apparent screaming match with the Astros dugout.

A member of the Astros dugout then waved for Laureano to come toward the dugout, and the 26-year-old then charged in that direction. Laureano was quickly wrestled to the ground and tensions soared for a few minutes.

Laureano was ejected, while Castellanos was later taken out of the game.

MLB as part of its coronavirus protocols, which were recently heightened in response to the Marlins and Cardinals’ outbreaks, prohibits teams from engaging in bench-clearing brawls.

The Astros earlier this season were involved in a bench-clearing incident after two of their players were thrown at by Los Angeles Dodgers pitcher Joe Kelly, in what many believed was payback for the Houston cheating scandal that was uncovered in the fall.

Kelly was suspended eight games, while Astros manager Dusty Baker and Dodgers skipper Dave Roberts were suspended one-game each.

Athletics pitcher and former Astros hurler Mike Fiers first spoke publicly about the Astros’ cheating scandal, which involved stealing signs electronically.

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