How Rich Hill made Yuli Gurriel pay for his racist gesture toward Yu Darvish

LOS ANGELES — Houston Astros first baseman Yuli Gurriel had to know that Dodgers fans would have their boos ready when the World Series returned to Dodger Stadium. What he may not have anticipated: Los Angeles Dodgers Game 6 starter Rich Hill was going to make him hear even more boos.

Gurriel is the man at the center of the World Series’ racial controversy, after he was caught making a slanted-eye gesture about Dodgers pitcher Yu Darvish following a homer in Game 3. Gurriel was suspended five games by MLB, with the catch being that he won’t serve his suspension until next regular season.

Yuri Gurriel heard quite a few boos from Dodgers fans in Game 6. (Getty Images)

That didn’t sit right with many fans, particularly Dodgers fans, who thought Gurriel should be suspended immediately. So when the series shifted back to L.A., Dodgers fans had their boos ready. They came first during lineup introductions, but that was nothing compared to when Gurriel came up to bat in the second inning.

And Hill helped make Gurriel pay in his own way.


While fans were booing Gurriel as he led off the inning, Hill took his time throwing the first pitch. In fact, he stepped on the mound, then stepped off and walked around a little bit — giving fans a little more time to boo Gurriel. Andy McCullough, the Dodgers’ beat writer for the L.A. Times, said Hill was particularly unhappy about what Gurriel did. So, payback:


The pitcher controls the pace of a game. Just like he can take his time on the mound to give a deserving player more time to soak up a warm ovation from the crowd, he can also give the boo-birds more time to do their work.

By the end of it, Gurriel got at least 30 seconds of loud boos from Dodgers fans. Hill was equally as slow between pitches during Gurriel’s second at-bat of the night. At one point, he stopped to stretch.

After the game — which the Dodgers won 3-1 to push this series to a Game 7 — Hill told reporters about his intentions:



Our best guess? Not too many people — in L.A. or anywhere else, really — will be worried about pace-of-play in this instance.

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Mike Oz is the editor of Big League Stew on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at mikeozstew@yahoo.com or follow him on Twitter!