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BASEBALL EXTRA | AMGEL REPORT : NOTES

Carew, Fabregas Had Words

May 08, 1997|MIKE DiGIOVANNA

A heated clubhouse argument after Tuesday night's Angel-Oriole game apparently was sparked by a disagreement between batting instructor Rod Carew and catcher Jorge Fabregas over the pitch selection on Cal Ripken's game-winning, seventh-inning grand slam.

Reliever Pep Harris was attempting to throw a 1-and-0 sinker to the inside corner, but the pitch didn't sink and wound up looking like a thigh-high fastball, which Ripken belted into Camden Yards' left-field seats for an 8-4 victory.

Afterward, a shouting match erupted in the shower area of the Angels' clubhouse, with expletives being hurled but, apparently, no punches thrown.

Several team sources confirmed the altercation involved Carew and Fabregas, but the Angel catcher said Wednesday that "it's over and done with. I don't have a problem with my teammates. They back me up 100%, and that's all I want to say about it."

Angel Manager Terry Collins said he spent a good portion of Wednesday meeting with several players and coaches in an attempt to defuse the situation.

"We're all back on the same page and heading in the same direction," Collins said. "Tempers were a little warm [Tuesday] night, but it's all taken care of."

Collins wasn't concerned that the incident might hurt team chemistry or morale.

"It shows you everyone wants to win and that no one likes losing," Collins said. "A lot of people think because these guys get paid good money they don't care, but this shows you they care, and care a lot."

Added shortstop Gary DiSarcina: "I grew up with two brothers and we got in fights all the time, and we still loved each other. Where I come from fighting is a good thing. It means you care about each other."

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How badly does closer Troy Percival want to pitch? Tuesday he offered to pay his own air fare to Baltimore so he could join the Angels. Collins appreciated the gesture but told him it wouldn't be necessary.

Percival, out for more than a month because of a nerve problem in his right shoulder, has been throwing off a mound and says his arm feels great, but the Angels, knowing how difficult nerve problems are to recover from, are being very cautious with him.

Oriole reliever Alan Mills has a pinched nerve in his left (non-throwing) shoulder and could be out for several months, and Glenn DiSarcina, brother of the Angels' shortstop and a Chicago White Sox minor leaguer, has been out for about two years because of a nerve problem.

Percival is expected to make several minor league rehabilitation appearances before being activated by the Angels.

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The Angels have today off before concluding their longest trip of the season with a three-game series in Milwaukee beginning Friday. . . . Craig Grebeck made his first career start in the outfield Wednesday night, playing for left fielder Garret Anderson against Oriole left-hander Jimmy Key. Anderson was the only Angel to have started every game this season.

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