It looks like there won't be any retaliation or bad blood between the Marlins and Nationals after Tuesday night's little dust-up.
In the fourth inning of the Marlins 11-2 win which snapped an eight-game losing streak, Ian Desmond took exception to a Tom Koehler fastball that got a little too close for comfort.
Koehler said Desmond yelled to him 'throw the pitch over the plate.' Catcher Jarrod Saltalamacchia intervened and then had some words for Desmond before the benches and bullpens cleared and umpires got in the mix. Both teams received warnings and cooler heads eventually prevailed.
"I wasn't necessarily thinking he had intentions of hitting me," Desmond told Nats reporters. "You can drill me in the ribs, legs, whatever you want. But four or five times missing up around the hands and the head. I'm not claiming it to be on purpose but you gotta be able to control the ball. No big deal. It wasn't intended to escalate to what it did. But it was heat of the moment. It's tough sometimes.
"I meant what I was saying. This is how I feed my family. I'm not scared to get hit. I've been hit plenty of times and never said a word. Up around the hands and head, I just don't like that."
Koehler and skipper Mike Redmond said the Marlins were simply trying to establish the inside part of the plate.
"Guys tend to get upset when they get crowded," Koehler said. "It is our job as starters to make sure they know that is our piart of the plate. We have been beat inside too many times these past couple of series and that is because we haven’t established inside late in the game. You never want to get beat inside late in the game, and that’s what’s been happening because we haven’t been throwing those pitches in."
Said Saltalamacchia: "We're teammates. That's what it comes down to, I'm going to protect our guys. Regardless if it is the pitcher, the first baseman, Stanton or anybody. We're here for each other. We're family. We're going to protect each other. If you see somebody yelling or saying something towards your pitcher, you're going to step in the way."
Koehler said the issue was dead afterward.
"I've known Jarrod for a long time – I wouldn't respect him if he didn't respond that way," Desmond said. "Like I said, it wasn't premeditated. It just came out. His reaction I'm sure wasn't premeditated either. This is baseball. We compete. Going forward, no hard feelings. This is the way the game goes sometimes."