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Players' Union Files Grievance Against Padres Over Gossage

September 04, 1986|TOM FRIEND

PHILADELPHIA — A grievance has been filed by the Major League Players Assn. against the San Diego Padres, who last week suspended pitcher Rich (Goose) Gossage for criticizing their front office.

Gossage's attorneys negotiated with Padre President Ballard Smith for three days, but Smith said Wednesday, "We never talked about lifting the suspension." Smith, who originally suspended Gossage for the rest of the season without pay, offered only to shorten the suspension.

Gossage and his representatives--agent Jerry Kapstein and attorney Bob Teaff--turned down the offer.

"Basically, we're where we were last Friday," Smith said. "We suspended him. We thought we had a legal right to do so, and they disagreed.

"Quite frankly, I welcome the grievance, as I'm interested to find out what rights I have as an employer."

Smith said earlier that Gossage would never again play for the Padres unless he changed his outspoken ways.

However, Gossage said in a statement Wednesday: "The meeting with Ballard Smith and (owner) Joan Kroc (last Monday) and the later conversations involving Ballard, Jerry Kapstein and me have been very productive in establishing a much better understanding among all of us. I know that we are all focusing on the future in a very positive manner. While the matter of the suspension has not been resolved and apparently will have to be resolved by the formal procedures, I am looking forward to returning to playing, as soon as possible, and am very optimistic about the future with the club."

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