LOS ANGELES — Manny Machado has had quite a series against Milwaukee over the last week, going 6-for-17 through the first four games and making headlines both good and bad.
It was both on Tuesday as Machado came around to score the winning run after his broken-bat single in the 13th and alertly taking second base on a wild pitch. Cody Bellinger’s single through the right side of the infield brought Machado around to even the series.
It was the 10th inning that the Brewers will remember after watching what they would later call a “dirty play.”
Machado grounded out to shortstop for the second out of the inning and dragged his left leg as he came across the bag to make contact with Milwaukee first baseman Jesus Aguilar.
Manny Machado kicked Jesús Aguilar. Many #takes will follow. pic.twitter.com/uMopidt8IJ— Fabian Ardaya (@FabianArdaya) October 17, 2018
The entire play can be seen here.
Aguilar took offense to Machado making contact and it resulted in both benches at least coming onto the field. Eventually the two players would hug it out when Machado reached first in the 13th. But that doesn’t mean the Brewers weren’t still mad over the incident.
“He’s a player that has a history of those types of incidents,” Christian Yelich said after the game. “One time is an accident. Repeated over and over and over again, you’re just a dirty player. It’s a dirty play by a dirty player. That’s what it is. I have a lot of respect for him as a player, but you can’t respect someone who plays the game like that.”
”It was a tough-fought baseball game. It has no place in our game. We’ve all grounded out. Run through the bag like you’ve been doing your whole life, like everybody else does. If it’s an accident, it’s an accident; but on the replay to us, it clearly looks like you clearly go out of your way to step on someone. It has no place in our game. It really doesn’t.”
Milwaukee manager Craig Counsell was asked whether he thought it was an instance where Machado was going beyond the bounds of playing hard.
“I don’t know,” Counsell said. “I guess they got tangled up at first base. I don’t think he’s playing all that hard.”
That last part goes along with the spots in this series when Machado has been caught not hustling on plays. The Dodger shortstop was quoted in an interview with as saying he would never be “Johnny Hustle” and that it wasn’t his “cup of tea.” After the game, Machado had little care for Milwaukee’s opinion of the play.
“If that’s dirty, that’s dirty,” Machado said. “I don’t know, call it what you want. I play baseball.”
“I try to go out there and win for my team. If that’s their comments, that’s their comments. I can’t do nothing bout that.”
It’s unclear at this point if Major League Baseball will take action against Machado.
“We talked,” Aguilar said. “It’s over. For me, it’s over.”