Tim Federowicz is only a rookie, but the Dodgers catcher knows baseball enough to understand it was only a matter of time before an opposing pitcher sent Cuban sensation Yasiel Puig sprawling.
You don't bust onto the scene like Puig has and expect rival pitchers to not take issue with how easy he's making this look.
The dramatic home runs and multi-hit games and the near .500 batting average and soaring slugging percentage and OPS are gaudy even for a seasoned veteran.
But for a guy barely completing his first week in the big leagues, it's enough to put a big red target on Puig's back.
If nothing else, to send him a message that baseball is much harder than he's making it look, and pitchers aren't about to let him set up in the batter's box so comfortably.
In a sport that polices itself more than any other, Puig was eventually going to pay a price for his success.
And that didn't need to be explained to the Dodgers.
"The more you think about it, you knew someone was going to knock him down," Federowicz said.
But even unwritten rules have by-laws, and Arizona Diamondbacks pitcher Ian Kennedy broke one of the biggies Tuesday when the message pitch he sent Puig sailed high and inside and smashed him in the face.
It was the first in a series of foolish plays by Kennedy, calling into question his baseball intelligence and putting all the blame for Tuesday night's brawl between the Diamondbacks and Dodgers squarely on his shoulders.
The fact Kennedy was throwing inside to Puig wasn't the issue.
Or even that he hit him, necessarily.
It's that he hit him in the face.
And when that happens, two legitimate questions get asked in the other dugout - both of which result in the sort of reaction we saw from the Dodgers and eventually led to the melee that unfolded in which six players and coaches were thrown out of the game.
First, it's hard not to wonder if Kennedy intentionally threw at Puig's head, considering he's a big-league pitcher capable of throwing a fastball just about anywhere he wants.
Second, if he isn't competent enough to direct his pitch to a place that sends a message but doesn't put the batter in harm's way, then he's really dumb to try anyway.
Whether it was hubris, incompetence or lack of intelligence on Kennedy's part, all roads led to Puig getting hit in the face.
And that didn't sit well with the Dodgers.
"If you can't pitch inside without hitting a guy in his head, then you shouldn't pitch inside," Dodgers manager Don Mattingly said.
Or, as Federowicz explained: "They say it wasn't intentional, but when you hit a guy in the face we take it personal."
The Dodgers had every right to retaliate the next inning, which starting pitcher Zack Greinke took care of when he hit Miguel Montero.
For some reason, the Diamondbacks acted surprised. Montero angrily gestured to Greinke, resulting in both dugouts and bullpens emptying and a whole bunch of yelling and finger-pointing.
But nothing too out of the ordinary, and when calm was restored, the reasonable assumption was things had evened out.
Puig gets hit in the face by Kennedy, and the Dodgers retaliate by hitting Montero.
The matter was over and done with, most conventional baseball people would agree.
But Kennedy, who started the whole thing, wasn't satisfied.
And again he showed an irresponsible lack of respect for the unwritten rule book, this time by hitting Greinke in the shoulder on another high, inside fastball.
Not only did Kennedy clumsily handle the message pitch to Puig, he compounded his recklessness by throwing at a pitcher.
The Dodgers, understandably, were livid.
"Thought it was (bull manure)," Mattingly said.
They all did.
"You don't throw at a pitcher," said Dodgers reliever Ronald Belisario, a sentiment that echoed throughout the clubhouse Tuesday.
So out came the hard-charging Dodgers again, spilling out of their dugout and bullpen with more than just fingers pointing and harsh words for the Diamondbacks.
Kennedy had crossed so many lines with his lack of respect, the Dodgers had no choice but to defend themselves with fists.
It was ugly. It was heated. It was even a little violent as players and coaches squared off, blows were traded and Arizona hitting coach Turner Ward got thrown over a railing near the Arizona dugout.
But it was necessary.
There was no way the Dodgers could let Kennedy's insolence go unchecked.
Without looking like a bunch of chumps to the rest of baseball, anyway.
"That's just the way the game is," Federowicz said.
Not that it should have ever come to that.
But then, not all Major League Baseball players understand the unwritten rule book.
Ian Kennedy sure doesn't.
And he's to blame for the whole wild night.