Former MLB Star Alex Romero Attacks Catcher With Bat During Wild Brawl in Venezuelan League

All-in brawls are not particularly unusual in baseball, but the one that took place on Wednesday night during a winter league game in Venezuela may have reset the benchmark.

In the eighth inning of the game between Aguilas del Zulia and Caribes de Anzoategui, Aguilas outfielder Alex Romero—who spent two seasons with the Arizona Diamondbacks in 2008 and 2009 and had a .239 batting average in 299 plate appearances over 144 games—attacked Caribes de Anzoategui catcher Gabriel Lino with the bat.

According to Yahoo Sports, the reason behind Romero's reaction did not appear immediately clear, but the 36-year-old attacked Lino shortly after objecting to a pitch that flew past him.

The game was broadcast by IVC Network in Venezuela but a live stream on YouTube meant footage of the incident was available to fans outside the South American country and clips of the brawl have since gone viral.

Following Romero's reaction, it did not take long for both benches to empty, with players fighting all over the diamond as the brawl almost spilled into the stands.

A total of six players were ejected after the fracas, including Romero, Lino, Caribes' pitcher Angel Nesbett and Caribes infielder Willians Astudillo—who is currently on the Minnesota Twins roster.


— Daniel Álvarez Montes (@DanielAlvarezEE) January 9, 2020

It was not the first incident of the game either, as Caribes manager Jackson Melian and three players had been ejected earlier.

In the seventh inning, after Niuman Romero and Alexi Amarista hit back-to-back home runs for Caribes, Aguilas opted to crank up the pressure on the batters, resulting in Caribes' Cesar Valera being hit by the first pitch he faced in the inning.

Both benches cleared after the incident, before order was momentarily restored until the all-in brawl in the following inning.

Despite the two lengthy delays, Caribes comfortably won the game 13-2 but the fallout from the brawl is going to linger on, with heavy fines and lengthy suspension potentially in store for a couple of the players involved.

The Venezuela winter league isn't new to this kind of incident either. In December 2018 a game between La Guaira and Caracas was suspended after players punched and kicked each other, while being pelted with debris and a variety of drinks from fans in the stands.

Incensed with La Guaira pitcher Jorgan Cavanerio throwing behind him twice during an at-bat, Caracas right fielder Felix Perez opted to charge the mound. Both benches cleared, with players pushing and shoving before Perez threw his helmet at Cavanerio, sparking a furious fight that took a while to settle.

Alex Romero, Arizona Diamondbacks
Alex Romero during a game between the Arizona Diamondbacks and the Los Angeles Dodgers at Dodger Stadium on September 1, 2009 in Los Angeles, California. Jeff Gross/Getty