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ANGELS REPORT

Greene Wants Suspension Reduced to a Single Game

April 22, 1999|MIKE DiGIOVANNA

Todd Greene plans to appeal a three-game suspension levied on him by the American League on Wednesday for charging the mound after being hit by a pitch from Brett Hinchliffe, sparking Sunday night's brawl against the Seattle Mariners.

Hinchliffe, who had given up a home run to Troy Glaus on the previous pitch, also received a three-game suspension, which he began serving Wednesday. Because Hinchliffe is a pitcher and will have his next start moved back, the Mariners won't really suffer any hardship because of his suspension.

The Angels, however, could lose their designated hitter for three games if Greene's suspension is upheld. Greene, who also received a $500 fine, probably will have a hearing before AL President Gene Budig when the Angels play at New York on May 11-13.

Greene, who hopes to get the sentence reduced to one game, said he didn't think his actions, compared to those of San Francisco's Charlie Hayes last week, warranted a three-game suspension. Hayes was suspended for four games for charging Arizona pitcher Todd Stottlemyre from second base.

"He got four games, and he came out and said he wanted to hurt the guy," Greene said. "I know they have to suspend me, but at the same time, I have to defend myself. I'm not going to take a blatant beanball from pitchers."

Greene said that was the first time he had ever charged the mound. In fact, that was the first time Greene had been ejected from a game at any level in any sport.

"My dad always said if I ever got kicked out of a game, I'd have to pay him $10," Greene said. "So now I guess my fine is really $510."

*

Third baseman Dave Hollins, traded from the Angels to the Blue Jays in March, knew Glaus was going to have a good year, "but I didn't think he'd get off to this good a start," he said.

"He's got so much talent, he's going to be a good player. That's why this trade was good for all concerned. He doesn't have to look over his shoulder, and I can play."

Not for another three or four weeks, though. Hollins, who started the season as Toronto's designated hitter, suffered a broken bone in his left hand checking a swing Saturday, and his left hand and wrist are in a cast.

Once he returns, Hollins, a switch-hitter throughout his career, will bat only from the right side. Hollins began 1999 with a .304 career average from the right side and a .241 mark from the left side.

"I saw a statistic that out of 70 starting pitchers in the American League only 14 are left-handed," Hollins said. "My right side is my dominant side, but I've never really had the chance to hit enough from that side to get in a groove. So I'm going to see how this goes."

TONIGHT

ANGELS' TIM BELCHER (1-1, 7.53 ERA)

vs.

BLUE JAYS' PAT HENTGEN (0-1, 6.06 ERA)

SkyDome, 4 PDT

TV--Fox Sports West. Radio--KLAC (570).

* Update--First baseman Mo Vaughn, eligible to come off the disabled list today, took two rounds of batting practice and was put through several agility tests Wednesday. But Manager Terry Collins probably will start him at DH today for fear of Vaughn tweaking his sprained left ankle on SkyDome's hard artificial turf. Vaughn hopes to return to the field this weekend or early next week. "No question, he's ready to play," Collins said. "But he's probably going to play with some pain."

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