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Grant Balfour, Victor Martinez jawing leads to benches clearing

Oct 7, 2013, 6:55 PM EDT

Division Series - Oakland Athletics v Detroit Tigers - Game Three Getty Images

Grant Balfour says Victor Martinez gave him “the death stare” and things escalated from there. While no punches were thrown, things got quite heated in the ninth inning of Oakland’s Game 3 win over the Detroit on Monday, adding some extra drama headed into Game 4.

Here’s the video:

And here’s Balfour talking to afterwards.

Martinez didn’t have anything to say after the game, but Tigers manager Jim Leyland just chalked it up to some extra playoff intensity, while adding that Balfour is always that intense anyway.

One thing that will be interesting to follow in Tuesday’s Game 4: Tigers starter Doug Fister finished second in the AL with 16 hit by pitches this year. It wouldn’t necessarily be intentional, but the A’s may decide to take it personally if they start getting plunked.

  1. clydeserra - Oct 7, 2013 at 7:01 PM

    Plunking is the stupidest form of retaliation. I hope the tigers do it several times.

  2. paulydefense - Oct 7, 2013 at 7:45 PM


  3. titansbro - Oct 7, 2013 at 8:04 PM

    Didn’t watch the video. But I remember Balfour with the rays & he was a total hothead.

  4. anxovies - Oct 7, 2013 at 8:13 PM

    I recognize that Death Stare. I get it from my ex-wife every time I see her. I am too afraid of her to retaliate.

  5. bigdicktater - Oct 7, 2013 at 8:18 PM

    Is that back they were the “Devil Rays”?
    It appears someone already knocked out VM’s teeth, or was he wearing his Dracula fangs?

    If I were pitching to these hotheads, I’d get my blackbelt and mma training in the offseason on the sly, tell NO ONE, then invite the first trash-talking SOB out to the mound for an ass-whippin’. Let him throw a punch and lay the mofo out before the ump can stop it.

    I, for one am really tired of this macho bs. Grow up you jerks.

  6. vincentbojackson - Oct 7, 2013 at 8:30 PM

    Balfour is a freaking maniac. Dude needs to see a professional and get on some medication.

  7. philliesblow - Oct 7, 2013 at 8:32 PM

    Many times in the NHL playoffs you’ll see the losing team start a fight late in a game to set the tone for the next game. Maybe that was Victor’s way of trying to light a fire under the Tigers for tomorrow.

    • km9000 - Oct 8, 2013 at 2:20 AM

      If they need a fire lit in the playoffs, that doesn’t really scream championship material.

  8. redwing26 - Oct 7, 2013 at 8:35 PM

    Why can’t Victor be just as intense as this douche on the mound? To say to a guy fu@k you bitch what are you looking at, and then say I don’t know what the problem is. Screw you Balfour Go tigers score enough to keep this douche in the bullpen!

  9. memphistigers311 - Oct 7, 2013 at 8:48 PM

    @redwing26 I have watched every A’s game this year. And watch every Balfour appearance for last two years. Dude screams at himself constantly. When he enters in Oak he has an entire section that screams “Balfour Rage” to Metallica’s “One” hard chorus part. Be upset all you like. But your boy Victor hit a foul ball and only stared at Balfour the entire time. The natural reaction when adrenaline pumping by competitive males is “Wtf you looking at B?” If you disagree you have never been on any playing surface playing any game/sport with physical competitiveness. It was a ploy to get the crowd going. Which is did a fantanstic job of. But sadly for Detroit and their fans. This A’s team is pure awesome. YOU CAN’T PUNK THE RAGING GNOME! :)

  10. proudlycanadian - Oct 7, 2013 at 9:20 PM

    A Death Stare will not tie the Kangaroo down sport. Got to use something a bit stronger on the Aussie, such as a home run.

  11. aidanscawley - Oct 7, 2013 at 10:42 PM

    I guess I don’t understand why “it’s his routine” is an acceptable excuse. Martinez’ stare was several notches below the Carlos Gomez face, and the look on his face when Balfour cursed him out certainly made him seem surprised Balfour had a reaction. Either way, just a weird incident.

    • clydeserra - Oct 7, 2013 at 11:59 PM

      its his routine is an explanation of Balfour’s histrionics, these guys are entertainers. If he is your guy you think its cute, if not you hate it. that’s fine, that’s fun

      But if you think for a minute that Martinez’ stare was not mad dogging (thousand yard, prison stare, death stare, whatever you want to call it) and an invitation for a confrontation* you have lived a very nice and sheltered life and I am happy for you.

      * confrontations in baseball and life are stupid both Balfour and martinez should be ashamed of themselves**

      **they won’t be, because sports is still full of macho idiots

  12. APBA Guy - Oct 8, 2013 at 12:23 AM

    Unfortunately one of the things a small market payroll doesn’t buy you is an enforcer. If things get dicey tomorrow, the A’s will sorely miss Petaluma’s own Jonny Gomes.

    I don’t expect they will, though. I think Leyland’s explanation is accurate:

    “Jim Leyland just chalked it up to some extra playoff intensity, while adding that Balfour is always that intense anyway.”

  13. ray0414 - Oct 8, 2013 at 1:17 AM

    wasnt a death stare, thats vmarts locked in look, he does that to almost every pitcher when hes locked into a good duel like that. balfour = douche

  14. bigpimp69 - Oct 8, 2013 at 2:44 AM

    Balfour has always been a complete punk. The guy has no understanding or respect for the game. This ain’t Aussie Rules, act like you have been there before.

    • clydeserra - Oct 8, 2013 at 7:12 AM

      wow, Brian, didn’t waste any time getting a HBT account after being eliminated.

      you are a hard worker, I will give you that

  15. historiophiliac - Oct 8, 2013 at 9:25 AM

    Here comes the bullpen! lol

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