PHOENIX — Yankees second baseman Starlin Castro watched a little pre-game video while sitting at his locker before batting practice Monday.
Scouting Arizona Diamondbacks starting pitcher Robbie Ray?
Maybe at some point, but during media availability Castro was checking video for of Texas Rangers second baseman Rougned Odor's punch to Toronto Blue Jays right fielder Jose Bautista's face on Sunday in Arlington, Texas.
He'd seen it before, but wanted to see it again.
"That was a good punch," Castro said. "Odor hit him pretty good. Bautista got it good."
The Yankees first found out about the fight a few minutes after the fact on their bus ride from Yankee Stadium to the airport following Sunday's win over the Chicago White Sox.
Right away, everyone had their phones out watching video again and again.
"Nowadays, something happens social media is going to take over," reliever Dellin Betances said.
The Yankees reaction?
"I don't know that we had a reaction other than you want to see it because it doesn't happen every day," third baseman Chase Headley said. "You don't see punches like that happen very often in baseball."
"It was a good one," first baseman Mark Teixeira said. "Everyone loves a good fight, and that was one of the best ones you'll ever see.
"That was crazy," Betances added. "In basketball you see punches like that. Not in baseball. He got him good."
Brian Cashman fine with players showboating
The incident occurred in the eighth inning of the Rangers' 7-6 win over the Blue Jays in Arlington, Texas in response to Bautista sliding in hard to second base to force a bad throw to first by Odor on a double play attempt that was changed to an out.
The Rangers already were still mad at Bautista, which reached back on a hit by pitch, for flipping his bat during his big home run in last year's American League wild card game, which Toronto won.
"Texas has issues from last year from Bautista flipped the bat," Castro said. "They're mad I guess."
Sure looked that way, although Bautista gets kudos for not being dropped by the punch.
"I think adrenalin lets you do a lot of things," Teixeira said. "We get hit with 100 mph fastballs all the time. When you're in the heat of the moment, things happen and Bautista probably had a lot of adrenalin. I'm not sure if Jose even felt it with the adrenalin that was probably going through his body."
As for Bautista celebrating his home runs, which is the root of this squabble, Headley offered an opinion.
"I think there's a way to do it," he said. "I think where you're reacting out of genuine emotion or aren't doing anything to show up an opponent, it's OK. I think any time you look at somebody or stare at somebody or make a gesture toward somebody's dugout, that's directed at them.
"If a pitcher strikes me out in a big situation and fist pumps out of excitement, good for him. If I get a hit and drive somebody in, I'm going to be fired up, too. But it's got to be genuine emotion not directed at them, so I think there's room for emotion and for the excitement. But it can go too far. I'm not saying I'm the judge of going too far but ... you can react and have fun and do these things without showing up your opponent."
Randy Miller may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter @RandyJMiller. Find NJ.com Philadelphia Sports on Facebook.
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