The debate over baseball's unwritten rules has reignited after a squabble and a sick burn between Madison Bumgarner and Max Muncy

  • The Los Angeles Dodgers’ Max Muncy hit a deep home run off of Madison Bumgarner on Sunday, then took a little too long watching the ball for Bumgarner, as the two exchanged words.
  • After the game, Muncy said he told Bumgarner to get the ball out of San Francisco Bay if Bumgarner didn’t like it.
  • Bumgarner said he was just trying to “express” himself, raising a debate about baseball’s unwritten rule about player celebrations and expression.
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The debate over baseball’s culture and unwritten rules has once again heated up after a squabble between the San Francisco Giants and Los Angeles Dodgers on Sunday.

In the top of the first inning, Muncy crushed the first pitch against Bumgarner, sending the ball over the right-field wall and into San Francisco Bay behind Oracle Park.

Bumgarner took exception to how Muncy watched the ball sail out of the stadium and had some words for Muncy as he rounded first base. Muncy seemed to gesture back at Bumgarner as he rounded the bases, but umpires kept them separated.

After the game, Muncy told reporters that Bumgarner told him to run instead of watching the ball. Muncy responded with a sick burn.

“I told him: ‘If you don’t want me to watch the ball you can go in the ocean and get it,'” Muncy said.

Muncy said he didn’t think he celebrated all that much.

“Honestly, I thought it was probably one of my tamer bat-flips that I’ve ever done. I didn’t actually think it was anything outrageous. I took one or two steps out of the box, started jogging, and that was really all it was.”

“He just struck a pose and walked further than I liked,” Bumgarner said.

In an era when many baseball players feel they should be able to express themselves more – and not face retaliation in the form of a beanball – Bumgarner said he was just expressing himself.

“They want to let everybody be themselves. Let me be myself,” Bumgarner said. “I just as soon fight than walk or whatever. Just do your thing, I’ll do mine.”

The debate seems one-sided, with more people agreeing with Muncy, particularly since Muncy’s “celebration” was relatively tame.

Of course, there are still groups of fans who love that Bumgarner is competitive and fiery.

The Dodgers won the game, 1-0.

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