Jesse Winker got a hero’s welcome while returning home Monday after sparking some weekend fisticuffs.
Winker ignited a benches clearing brawl between his Mariners and the Los Angeles Angels on Sunday after he was drilled in the rear end by a pitch from Andrew Wantz. When he returned to his home stadium on Monday night, the fans showed their appreciation for his actions.
In his first at-bat during the Mariners’ game against the Orioles, he received a standing ovation from the crowd of over 21,000 at T-Mobile Park.
“There’s almost a 3,000th hit vibe inside the ballpark right now,” announcer Dave Sims said on the Root Sports Network broadcast.
The positive vibes for the Mariners did stop there, however, as Baltimore dominated Seattle, 9-2. Winker went 0-for-3 with a strikeout and a walk, as five Orioles batters hit home runs.
Additionally, for his role in the brawl that cleared both benches, Winker was suspended seven games.
Winker started the brawl after charging the Angels bench following the pitch that hit him, appearing to exchange words with Los Angeles manager Phil Nevin. The Angels were apparently upset that Mike Trout was nearly beaned in in the head the day before, leading to them throwing at Winker.
It’s not the first time fans have expressed admiration for Winker since the fight. Sofie Dill, a Mariners content creator, ordered Winker a pizza to Angel Stadium on Sunday after the game ended to show her appreciation.
Per social media, the outfielder received – and enjoyed – the pizza.