Late last week in a game between the Austin Bats and Altoona Curve, Joey Gallo sprinted towards a Shelby Miller occupied mound. If one didn’t know any better they would have thought they were watching a boxing match. These two CBL heavy weights have been brewing this rivalry for a long time and finally it erupted into a brawl that got the two of them suspended for 10 games.
April 26th 2018
This day will forever be looked at as the start of it all… Joey Gallo had been having a great month as well as Shelby Miller. They both had big heads at the time. Gallo hit a 2-2 curveball a long way and just sort of stared at it, the ball hooked foul and Shelby Miller didn’t seem to appreciate the sportsmanship. The next pitch was a 2-2 fastball up in the zone that struck Gallo out, Shelby was rather Ethusiastic about the strike out. After the game Gallo admitted frustration and anger towards Millers “Antics”. Gallo said “When I hit that ball I let the intensity of the game get to my head. Everyone has a competitive side. I was a show boat which is unexceptable. The worst part was it was a foul ball. I see why Miller was irked by my actions but his reaction to my strikeout was classless.” While I must admit Gallo’s account of the situation seemed pretty subjective to me I must say April 26th 2018 was the start of the animosity between the two.
July 17th 2018
Another moment between these two erupts, while nobody charges the mound or gets thrown out, Gallo and Miller exchanged words. In the 5th inning 1 on 2 out Altoona third basemen Gallo stepped up and took a huge hack at the first pitch he saw, Gallo’s helmet even flew off. The pitch had Gallo about 30 feet out in front as it was a back door curve ball. The next pitch was a fast ball up and in. The at bat ultimately wound up being a Gallo strike out. Gallo had some “descriptive” words for Miller as he walked back to the dugout. After the game Gallo said “He knows why he threw that fast ball up near my face and he knows why I said what I said. I can’t wait to hit a home run off of Miller… I need to take that man down a peg.” These words after the game already seem intensified from their last altercation and things only got worse from here.
May 24th 2019
In a hot May game, Miller got the mound once again against Gallo’s Curve. Miller was dealing that game. Chewing up the Altoona order left and right. Austin was enjoying a 3-0 lead in the 6th inning when Gallo came up and took a hanging curveball thrown by Miller out of the park. Gallo stood there, watching his home run, and proceeded to trot around the bases nice and slow. The showman ship on Gallo was at an all time high and Miller didn’t like that one bit. After the game Miller said “I find it funny the same person who’s called me classless just let incidents that we face last year carry over to this year. He’s the classless player.
June 12th 2020
This hot June game that resulted in a 4-2 win for the Austin Bats also resulted in Miller and Gallo’s 10 game suspension. Miller once again was carving Altoona up. Too this point in the game he had only given up three hits and one run. Gallo grounded out to second his first at bat and worked the count to 3-2 this at bat. After fouling off a few good pitches by Miller, Gallo ended up taking ball four on a pitch high and tight. Gallo began walking down the baseline saying a few explicit words until Miller finally chirped back. That was it for Gallo as he sprinted out toward the mound, pushing the catcher out of his way while going towards Miller. The nice relaxing game of baseball turned into a boxing match featuring two CBL allstars. Altoona fans where on there feet as Gallo and Miller exchanged blows. Both ended up leaving the game with black eyes and 10 game suspensions as the Austin and Altoona benches cleared. Manager Ron Gardenhire had this to say about he altercation. “I was yelling from the bench just go to first! The relationship Gallo and Miller have isn’t a secret but I thought Gallo would be smart enough to realize we are in a wild card race and his bat needs to be in our lineup. Next time he should do more thinking then fighting.” Gallo was extremely disappointed in his action and the results that came from this. Gallo said after the game “I let a lot of people down today. The first thing I notice while walking to the club house was the Altoona fans on their feet cheering, what I did shouldn’t be something to cheer about. I’m a role model to a lot of kids and I let my anger get to me. I let them down, the fans down, my team down, and myself down. I just hope to make a winning contribution when I get back and until then I’ll be hitting the cages and keeping my head down.
GM Zima had this to say about the brawl between Gallo and Miller. “I can’t speak for Miller but I surely can speak for Gallo. This will not happen again! Altoona as a community loves baseball not boxing. Gallo let the anger get the better of him and he knows he made a mistake. If Altoona is going to make headlines it should be with a picture of our player throwing a haymaker.”
Surely Gallo and Miller will battle again and when they do I’m sure the whole CBL organization and fanbase will be watching… Gallo and Miller are set to comeback in 6 games. Stay tooned for more Toona news.