A top Major League prospect is going viral for all the wrong reasons. Cleveland Guardians prospect George Valera got involved in an ugly altercation on the field during his Columbus Clippers’ matchup with the Nashville Sounds.
Sounds right-hander Eric Lauer, who has frequently appeared with the National League’s Milwaukee Brewers, stood on the mound. Lauer opposed Valera at the plate. The Guardian prospect then could be seen barking at Sounds catcher Alex Jackson. The catcher, Jackson, defended himself against the lefty outfielder, Valera.
Eventually, tensions flared. Valera went at Jackson, still with his bat in his hands. Valera then appeared to swing at Jackson, who was unfazed by the blow to the chest protector.
This was the altercation pic.twitter.com/9TrTWbWoAo
— Brendan Walsh (@Cle_Brendan52) July 7, 2023
The fight eventually sparked a massive bench-clearing brawl. Video of the battle between the Clippers and Sounds quickly went viral Thursday night.
— DannyBTalks (Daniel Baldwin) (@DannyBTalks) July 7, 2023
Tweets differed on whether Valera punched or shoved an umpire working the game.
Benches have cleared in Nashville after Guardians prospect George Valera shoved the umpire. pic.twitter.com/SS0jJpm1wE
— Tennessee Baseball Network (@tnballplayers) July 7, 2023
Of course, the common thread in each accusation would be that Valera put his hands on an umpire. Should that be true, that’s a big no-no that will cost Valera dearly. Whether that’s a fine, suspension, or even both is still yet to be seen, pending a review of the incident.
George Valera is the No. 30 prospect currently on MLB.com’s Top 100 prospect rankings. He is the Guardians’ second-highest-ranked prospect behind 12th-ranked Gavin Williams, a right-handed pitcher.