Bees descend upon Petco, delay Marlins-Padres

June 3rd, 2019

SAN DIEGO -- Petco Park was buzzing on Sunday afternoon. And not for the Padres -- who dropped a second straight game to the Marlins, 9-3.

The two sides had their series finale briefly interrupted because of a bee delay, which lasted 28 minutes.

Yes, a bee delay.

With the Marlins leading 3-0 in the bottom of the third inning, a large swarm rolled in from left field and settled on the microphone attached to the netting next to the home dugout.

Players left the area, and they eventually left the playing field. On-site pest control was summoned, and after a short delay, the game resumed with relatively minimal fuss.

"I don’t know where they came from, said Marlins first baseman Martin Prado, who retreated deep into foul ground initially before heading to the dugout. "It was crazy. It was a long time waiting, but it’s always good when you win the game."

On the Padres' side, Hunter Renfroe kept things cool. His great grandparents owned apiaries (used for keeping bees), and he's a self-described "nature freak" who had done his homework on bees.

"I'm a nature guy, so I knew exactly what was going on -- the queen bee landed on the speaker, then everything else went around it," Renfroe said. "It was pretty cool to see."

Evidently, Renfroe served as the calming presence in the Padres' dugout, but not everyone kept such a level head. Catcher Austin Hedges donned a Deadpool mask in the dugout for protection.

For the two managers, their pitching situations took precedence. Andy Green and Padres starter Matt Strahm briefly discussed whether Strahm should stay loose in the batting cages before deciding against it. Green noted that if the delay had lasted much longer, Strahm's outing would've been cut short.

The Marlins never seriously considered doing the same. Trevor Richards was on the mound when the delay began, and he re-took the mound after it ended. Ultimately, his gap between pitches was much shorter.

“It’s like a little rain delay," said Marlins manager Don Mattingly. "You don’t want Trevor sitting there too long. That’s the main thing you’re worried about -- your pitcher."

After the delay, Richards got Josh Naylor to pop to center, and the game continued without further interruption. Richards worked five scoreless innings, while Strahm imploded and allowed seven runs over 4 1/3.

It was the second such instance of a bee delay in Petco Park history. On July 2, 2009, bees delayed play during an Astros-Padres game for 52 minutes.