Ten years ago today, Michael Barrett punched A.J. Pierzynski after a collision at home plate sparking brawl. A.J had scored on a sacrifice fly to left and he took out Barrett who was blocking the plate without the ball (legal in those days).
Of course, the local papers are revisiting the fight on the 10th anniversary.
Here’s a picture from today’s Trib.
This link is for one of many YouTube videos. Punch A.J.
If you watch the video, don’t miss Scotty Pods wrestle Barrett to the ground.
The various articles about the collision and fight detail Barrett’s 10-game suspension along with those of Brian Anderson and Joey Cora. A.J. received a $2,000 fine but no suspension.
What the stories don’t point out is that A.J. made a $48,000 profit from the fight. In 2006, A.J. was one of five players in the All-Star Game’s “Final Vote” competition. The White Sox ran a “Punch A.J.” campaign to get out the vote — think punch as in punching your ballot.
Well, in a very close vote, A.J. won the All-Star spot triggering a $50,000 bonus clause in his contract.
Here’s my Punch A.J. T-shirt — and, a bumper sticker that’s still on my Sox bulletin board.
One fan, I know, edited her T-shirt.