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 Rodney's suspension cut to two games out Mon & Tues

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PostSubject: Rodney's suspension cut to two games out Mon & Tues   Tue Sep 08, 2009 1:57 pm

Rodney suspended, fined for throw
Closer claims no malice intended in heave toward stands

By Tom Singer / MLB.com

09/08/09 12:42 PM ET

Closer Fernando Rodney's "wild pitch" at the conclusion of Friday's 4-3 victory in Tampa Bay has turned into an expensive heave.

Major League Baseball on Tuesday handed Rodney a three-game suspension for tossing the last-out ball wildly toward the stands, bouncing it off the first row of the Tropicana Field press box. Rodney was also assessed an undisclosed fine for what Bob Watson, MLB's vice president of on-field operations, called "his inappropriate actions."

Rodney's emotional throw did not strike anyone, but it did scatter reporters as it caromed to the rear of the press box.

Immediately after the incident, Rodney claimed to have tossed the ball to the fans. However, to witnesses he appeared to have heaved it in frustration after a difficult ninth inning in which he had allowed two runs prior to securing his 32nd save.

"[I was] emotional. It's nothing bad," Rodney said at the time. "I know I'm not supposed to throw the ball, but I'm feeling in the moment. ... I don't throw it to hit nobody. I think if I throw it in the right spot, I don't hit nobody."

If Rodney appeals, the discipline will be held in abeyance until a hearing. Otherwise the suspension begins with the Tigers' game on Tuesday night in Kansas City.

Tom Singer is a reporter for MLB.com and writes an MLBlog, Change for a Nickel. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.


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PostSubject: Re: Rodney's suspension cut to two games out Mon & Tues   Tue Sep 08, 2009 2:26 pm

CLICK HERE TO VIEW THE THROW


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PostSubject: Re: Rodney's suspension cut to two games out Mon & Tues   Tue Sep 08, 2009 4:06 pm

Rodney to appeal suspension
BECK'S BLOG
Posted on September 8, 2009 at 1:22 PM

A Tigers spokesperson said Tuesday that Fernando Rodney plans to appeal his three-game suspension handed down from Major League Baseball for his throw into the press box at Tropicana Field Friday night. The suspension otherwise would've started tonight against the Royals.

The heave came after Rodney gave up two runs in the ninth inning but still held on to save a 4-3 Tigers win over the Rays. After giving up an RBI single and double, Rodney stranded the potential tying run at third base and go-ahead run at second with a groundout. Rodney got the ball from first baseman Miguel Cabrera and flung it towards the seats behind the plate. The ball hit off the front row of the press seats and bounced into the back of the press box.

Nobody was hit, but it obviously raised safety concerns at the Commissioner's office, as well as in the press box. Rodney insisted there was no malice intended.

"I was throwing the ball to the fans," Rodney said afterwards. "[I was] emotional. It's nothing bad. I know I'm not supposed to throw the ball, but I'm feeling in the moment. ... I don't throw it to hit nobody. I think if I throw it in the right spot, I don't hit nobody."

UPDATE @ 2pm: There is some precedence for this suspension. A Major League Baseball spokesperson cited former Astros reliever and current Diamondbacks reliever Chad Qualls, who threw a ball into the third deck of seats at Angel Stadium after blowing a five-run lead in the seventh inning against the Angels on June 18, 2007. He, too, was suspended three games along with a $3,000 fine. Qualls' appeal was denied about a month later.


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PostSubject: Re: Rodney's suspension cut to two games out Mon & Tues   Tue Sep 08, 2009 9:07 pm

The suspension was a bit much...
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PostSubject: Re: Rodney's suspension cut to two games out Mon & Tues   Tue Sep 08, 2009 10:43 pm

so was the fine! I saw the tape....he wasn't throwing at anyone...maybe he could've kept in the infield, though!
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PostSubject: Re: Rodney's suspension cut to two games out Mon & Tues   Tue Sep 08, 2009 11:50 pm

He should have been fined, but three days is a bit too much. Outfielders throw balls to fans tooo hard many times.


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PostSubject: Re: Rodney's suspension cut to two games out Mon & Tues   Wed Sep 09, 2009 2:44 am

I got hit in the leg with a line drive during batting practice once and got a huge bruise (plus the ball). They could have done batting practice in an indoor cage and not put me at risk. Nobody was fined/suspended Rolling Eyes


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PostSubject: Re: Rodney's suspension cut to two games out Mon & Tues   Wed Sep 09, 2009 3:48 pm

He should've gotten more games...


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PostSubject: Re: Rodney's suspension cut to two games out Mon & Tues   Wed Sep 09, 2009 3:54 pm

Rodney suspended, fined for throw
Closer claims no malice intended in heave toward stands

By Jason Beck / MLB.com

09/08/09 8:13 PM ET

KANSAS CITY -- Fernando Rodney insists there was no ill intent from his postgame throw into the press box at Tropicana Field on Friday night. However, there were still consequences.

Those came Tuesday, when Major League Baseball handed down a three-game suspension and an undisclosed fine. The announcement came from Bob Watson, MLB's vice president of on-field operations.


Hours later, Rodney confirmed that he's appealing the ruling with help from the Tigers. Team president/general manager Dave Dombrowski called the suspension a "pretty severe penalty for a guy throwing the ball into the stands, when I see a lot of guys do that all the time."

Had Rodney not appealed the ruling, his suspension would've started Tuesday night against the struggling Royals on a night when manager Jim Leyland was hoping to give setup man and likely fill-in closer Brandon Lyon a night off.

Rodney's throw in question came after he gave up two runs in the ninth inning but held on to save a 4-3 Tigers win over the Rays. After giving up an RBI single and double, Rodney stranded the potential tying run at third base and go-ahead run at second with a groundout. Rodney got the ball from first baseman Miguel Cabrera and flung it towards the seats behind the plate. The ball hit off the front row of the press seats and bounced into the back of the press box.

Nobody was hit, but it obviously raised concerns about fan and media safety. Rodney insisted afterwards there was no malice intended, and he repeated those feelings Tuesday.

"If you try to hit somebody, you're suspended. I didn't try to hit anybody," Rodney said.

Dombrowski said he was one of the few watching when Rodney threw the ball. He and Leyland met with Rodney that night in Leyland's office at Tropicana Field and heard much the same thing.

"Rodney was very apologetic," Dombrowski said.

It's the first such incident for Rodney, who has become known for his dramatic outings this year on his way to 32 saves but has never thrown a ball intentionally into the stands. Former Tigers closer Juan Acevedo fired a ball into the upper-deck seats behind home plate at Comerica Park after one of his saves in 2002, but was not disciplined.

"I can never condone a person throwing a ball into the stands," Dombrowski said, "but I can say after talking to him [that] I believe he didn't intend to hit anybody. And thank goodness he didn't."

Dombrowski said he was told a "very strong" influence for the suspension was a letter from St. Petersburg Times reporter Marc Topkin, president of the Tampa Bay chapter of the Baseball Writers' Association of America.

"I think a lot of it was driven by the letter that was written by the president of the association in Tampa," Dombrowski said. "Afterwards, he didn't think that Rodney was at all sorry or remorseful. ... I know he was remorseful when I spoke to him. He was very, very sorry."

Topkin said by phone Tuesday night that the email to Pat Courtney, Major League Baseball's vice president of media relations, wasn't intended to prompt punishment but to make sure they were aware of the incident. Even without the email, Topkin said, "It wasn't as if this would've gone unnoticed."

The email, Topkin said, reflected his observation of Rodney's postgame comments.

"I said in the email that he did not apologize afterward," Topkin said, "nor did he show any remorse that somebody might've been hurt, which was a very real possibility.

Said Topkin: "I'm surprised that the issue of the Tampa Bay chapter of the Baseball Writers' Association talking with Major League Baseball is part of the story. Clearly, Fernando Rodney threw the ball into the press box. Clearly, Major League Baseball was concerned enough to suspend him."

There is precedence for the suspension. A Major League Baseball spokesperson cited former Astros reliever and current D-backs closer Chad Qualls, who threw a ball into the upper deck at Angel Stadium after blowing a five-run lead in the seventh inning against the Angels on June 18, 2007. He, too, was suspended three games and received a $3,000 fine. Qualls' appeal was denied about a month later.

Any loss of Rodney, even for a few days, takes away the centerpiece of the Tigers' bullpen down the stretch in a division race that could hinge on a late-inning victory or two. Leyland rested Rodney the next two days and used Lyon to wrap up Detroit's next two victories at Tampa Bay. Lyon would presumably be the Tigers' closer in Rodney's absence.

That said, the Tigers could use an appeal to table a suspension for a later point. In that aspect, however, an appeal that lasts into the final few weeks could force the Tigers to go without their closer at an even more important point.

Asked if timing any suspension could be a consideration, Dombrowski said, "It might, but I don't know that answer. When you look ahead, those are very important games. But with 26 games left, they're all very important. He's our closer. We don't want to lose him."

Jason Beck is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.


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PostSubject: Re: Rodney's suspension cut to two games out Mon & Tues   Mon Sep 14, 2009 7:40 pm

Rodney's suspension cut to two games
Tigers closer not available to pitch Monday or Tuesday

By Jason Beck / MLB.com

09/14/09 5:13 PM ET

DETROIT -- Tigers closer Fernando Rodney will serve a two-game suspension, starting Monday night, after Major League Baseball heard his appeal for the penalty he received for throwing a ball into the press box at Tropicana Field on Sept. 4.

The original suspension, handed out last Tuesday, was three games. Rodney immediately appealed it and made his case by phone Monday afternoon. He reiterated his argument that he didn't intend to throw the ball into the box, and that he was truly sorry for throwing the ball into the stands in the first place.

While he had a game taken off his suspension, he said his fine remained $3,000.

"It's a lot of money," Rodney said.

The Tigers' five-game losing streak, which ended with Sunday's win over the Blue Jays, didn't leave Rodney with any save opportunities while his suspension was on appeal. Sunday marked the first time since then that he finished out a victory, and it wasn't a save situation. He pitched three other times, largely just to get some work and stay fresh.

Manager Jim Leyland didn't want to talk about the matter. However, he mentioned Sunday that he would have to rest Rodney on Monday anyway after he pitched in the previous three games.

Normally, setup man Brandon Lyon would fill in as Detroit's closer, but he also pitched in the first three games of the series. Leyland was still hoping to have him available, but wasn't sure.

Still, the suspension will be over by the time the Tigers leave town for a nine-game, three-city road trip to Minnesota, Cleveland and Chicago that could determine the American League Central race. The Twins and White Sox are both looking up in the standings at the Tigers, who have a 5 1/2-game lead and a magic number of 15.

Rodney can work out with the team before the game and throw on the side, but he can't be in the dugout or the clubhouse once the game starts. Most likely, he'll be watching the games from one of the suites that his teammates have.

Jason Beck is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.


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