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BASEBALL EXTRA | AROUND THE LEAGUE

Phillips Not Silent During Appeal

May 01, 1997|Associated Press

Tony Phillips of the Chicago White Sox suggested Wednesday night that his two-game suspension might have been racially motivated or a sign that AL President Gene Budig has a vendetta against him.

"I don't know if it's a black-and-white thing or a Tony thing," said Phillips, who is black. "There's a double standard coming out of that office. It's not fair."

On Tuesday, Budig suspended Phillips for a profanity-laced tirade directed at umpire John Shulock during an April 21 game.

Phillips appealed the suspension. He can continue to play until a hearing is held or until the appeal is withdrawn.

AL spokeswoman Phyllis Merhige said Wednesday night the league does not comment on ongoing disciplinary matters.

"Ain't nobody been suspended for arguing. There's no precedent," Phillips said. "That comes from [Budig] not knowing baseball and what goes on inside baseball. Players and umpires argue."

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Hideki Irabu, touted as the Nolan Ryan of Japanese baseball, was given permission by the Japanese commissioner's office to begin contract negotiations with the New York Yankees, who acquired the rights to the right-hander last week in a trade with the San Diego Padres.

The deal was approved by the Major League Baseball executive council on Monday.

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The Texas Rangers released veteran pitcher Kevin Gross from triple-A Oklahoma City on Wednesday, one day before he would have become a free agent if not promoted to the majors.

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