"I just wanted to make sure I've got him pinned and not me because I've been in that situation before and it's not fun," Howell said Wednesday.
Howell experienced his share of scraps on the basketball court growing up in Modesto and with fraternity brothers as a freshman at Texas. But those don’t compare to bench-clearing brawls in the majors, he said. Howell likened Wednesday's brawl to a Red Sox-Devil Rays skirmish on June 5, 2008, when he played for the Rays.
This time, it was Howell at the heart of the shoving. He and the rest of the relievers immediately looked for departing Diamondbacks starter
"You just keep your head on a swivel because it can get weird," Howell said. "You just try to defend your guys, and if something happens you want to get in there and help him out."
Howell saw Dodgers reliever
"You don't know who's who and what's what," Howell said. "You just react and that's what happened. I just wanted to make sure I didn't get got. And that was it."
Howell rammed Ward head-first over the railing, Ward's wedding ring pressing right in front of the television camera. As Howell began to flip him over, Diamondbacks catcher Miguel Montero swooped in and threw Howell off him.
After all was said and done and the Dodgers closed out a 5-3 victory, Howell went home, but two images stood out in his mind:
"I kept seeing Greinke getting hit in the face, in the head," Howell said, adding that he got goosebumps when Puig hopped up and jogged to first base.
But this morning, there was a rejuvenated aura in the clubhouse, Howell said. Last night's tremendous victory gives the Dodgers a chance to win their second series since May 22.
"There's a lot more energy, but we've got to get back to playing baseball, and that's the key," Howell said.