Tensions escalate as White Sox’s Tony La Russa accuses Astros of hitting Jose Abreu on purpose

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CHICAGO — Tension between the Astros and White Sox simmered throughout the American League Division Series before reaching a boiling point during the eighth inning of Houston’s 10-1 victory in Game 4.

Astros reliever Kendall Graveman plunked White Sox slugger José Abreu with a full-count fastball, incensing Chicago manager Tony La Russa, who insisted Graveman intentionally hit the reigning American League MVP and challenged the Astros to admit it.

“They did hit him intentionally,” La Russa said. “They should have the guts to admit that they did it, why they did it, I have no reason to understand.”

La Russa made a scene in the immediate aftermath, charging from Chicago’s third-base dugout to confront home-plate umpire Vic Carapazza. Umpires huddled at La Russa’s request but chose not to eject Graveman, who plunked six batters in 23 regular-season appearances with the Astros. La Russa had a lively discussion with Carapazza afterward, prompting the sellout crowd at Guaranteed Rate Field to chant his name in support.

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