Eduardo Arredondo of Mexico fights with Jay Johnson of Canada during the World Baseball Classic First Round Group D game at Chase Field on March 9, 2013 in Phoenix, Ariz. (Christian Petersen/Getty Images/AFP)
PHOENIX - Rene Tosoni saw it all unfold before him.
With Canada up six runs in the ninth, on the way to a 10-3 win over Mexico on Saturday at Chase Field, Tosoni headed to the plate after leadoff hitter Chris Robinson beat out a bunt.
“I saw the third baseman (Luis Cruz) give the ball to pitcher (Arnold Leon) but before he did, he tapped the ball on his own ribs,” said Tosoni.
Translation: Hit him here.
“He missed his first two attempts, then I stood almost on the plate,” said Tosoni. “I asked him to hit me. Hey, we get another runner on base.”
Sure enough, Leon plunked Tosoni on the backside and the benches emptied. What ensued was the most violent we’ve seen since George Bell charged Bruce Kison at Exhibition Stadium.
Lefty Jay Johnson landed a New Brunswick haymaker on Eduardo Arredondo, who had been swinging away at his Philadelphia Phillies teammate Tyson Gillies.
“I’m not allowed to talk,” said Johnson, who was escorted by a security guard to the Canada bus.
Peter Orr, Johnson and Tosoni were all ejected by plate ump Brian Gorman.
“They got me for instigating,” said Orr.
Oliver Perez, Alfredo Aceves, Leon and Arredondo were tossed for Mexico.
Mexico manager Rick Renteria said he talked with his players and explained that, because of the tiebreaker setup involving run differential, teams would try to score as many times as possible regardless of the score.