Benches Clear in Tigers-White Sox Game, Jim Leyland Goes Crazy

Josh Berenter@JBerenterCorrespondent IJuly 11, 2013

There is no love lost between Detroit and Chicago sports teams.

The latest example of the heated Midwest rivalry came in Thursday afternoon's game between the Tigers and White Sox in the sixth inning after Anibal Sanchez gave up a grand slam and Luke Putkonen entered the game in relief.

After retiring Alejandro De Aza, Putkonen unleashed a pitch that went behind Alexei Ramirez.

Ramirez took a few steps toward the mound and the benches—and bullpens—cleared.

(Video can be found by accessing this link from

The incident was fueled by a Chris Sale pitch that came in high and tight to Prince Fielder one at-bat after Miguel Cabrera launched his 30th home run of the season in the fifth inning.

The Tigers and White Sox have shown in the past that they aren't afraid to mix it up outside the lines. They've been in several heated altercations, including one in 2000 that resulted in 11 ejections, 16 suspensions and nine fines.

Things didn't get quite as out of hand on Thursday, with cooler heads eventually prevailing, but Tigers manager Jim Leyland took exception to the fact that Putkonen was ejected after Sale wasn't even warned about his chin-music pitch.

Leyland proceeded to give fans their money's worth at Comerica Park.

Leyland emerged from the dugout several times to make sure the umpires knew his exact thoughts on the matter.

The umps gave Leyland a long leash in the ordeal, but by Round 3 of his argument, it was clear he was going to settle for nothing less than an ejection.

Which is exactly what he received.

Chicago went on to beat Detroit 6-3, allowing the last-place White Sox to take two of three games against the first-place Tigers in the series.

The two teams will meet again 16 times this season.

Buckle your seat belts.