Former Braves reliever’s disdain for bunting leads to benches clearing at Fenway

Things got interesting in Boston on Sunday afternoon and a former Atlanta reliever was at the center of the action.
Milwaukee Brewers v Boston Red Sox
Milwaukee Brewers v Boston Red Sox / Maddie Malhotra/Boston Red Sox/GettyImages

Sunday was a drama-filled day across Major League Baseball and for different reasons. For Atlanta Braves fans, their concern was with Ronald Acuña Jr. exiting the game with an injury to his left knee.

However, there was more drama to be found and a familiar face in the middle of it. The Milwaukee Brewers are no strangers to drama as they've had multiple bench-clearing moments in 2024. That narrative continued on Sunday afternoon in Boston as they faced the Red Sox. Things got extremely heated between both sides during the late innings and it made for good television.

Things got extremely heated between both sides during the late innings and it made for good television. However, was this a warranted altercation between both sides? How did things devolve so suddenly?

That's a great question because it felt like it came out of nowhere. It caught both benches off guard but as soon as things escalated both teams were on the field within a moment's notice. It was one of those incidents where benches cleared but nothing came from it.

It was an odd exchange and nothing happened on the field that warranted the benches being emptied. So, what happened?

What on earth led to the Brewers and Red Sox benches emptying?

Former Atlanta Braves reliever Chris Martin was visibly unhappy after getting the final out of the top of the seventh inning. Martin issued comments in the direction of first base as he was walking off the field and almost immediately, Brewers first base coach Quintin Berry started yelling back.

When watching the video of the incident it appears Martin was muttering something to himself but loud enough that Berry heard it. Berry seemed far more upset than Martin was, but whatever the Milwaukee first base coach said caused everyone to react. The Red Sox reliever whipped around and started talking back. However, he was held back quickly by coaches and teammates.

After the game ended, we learned that the former Brave took issue with the Brewers bunting twice during his outing. That seems like a strange thing to be upset over as it's simply a part of the game. However, it appears to be very important to Martin and led to this exchange.

It seems like a silly reason to cause the benches and bullpens to empty onto the field. Berry was extremely angry, yelling at Martin almost immediately. It's an oddly confusing exchange because both sides don't really have a leg to stand on here. It's a rather useless argument.

Martin stated after the game that he was just being competitive and that he wasn't a fan of them bunting. He went on to throw shade at the Brewers offense as he said: "Maybe they don't think they can get a hit or whatever."

A tweet posted online from the account Boston Strong stated that Martin had a rather vulgar exchange which brings a little more context as to why it gained so much offense. Berry shouted back his own obscenities as well. It makes for good television but it does leave you scratching your head a bit as to why it was an issue in the first place.

Chris is normally a very level-headed and calm person, so to see him get that upset was a bit odd. He can have his opinion on bunting, but it seems like it would have been better to just keep his comments to himself. As for Berry, he'd have been better off just letting it go but the heat of the moment took over instead.

Boston eventually walked away with a 2-1 win but I wager this game will be remembered for this peculiar benches-clearing situation instead.

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