Thursday, January 18, 2018
Tampa Bay Rays

Dempster begins suspension for plunking A-Rod

SAN FRANCISCO — Red Sox RHP Ryan Dempster accepted his punishment without admitting any misdeed.

Dempster was suspended for five games and fined by Major League Baseball on Tuesday for intentionally hitting Yankees 3B Alex Rodriguez with a pitch on Sunday.

Though Dempster still claims he was trying to establish the inside part of the plate and wasn't trying to hit Rodriguez on purpose, he will not contest the punishment and began serving it.

"I thought about appealing," Dempster said. "At the end of the day, I think Major League Baseball does a really good job of thinking through punishments before they hand them out. I thought it was in the best interest of us as a team to go ahead and serve my suspension."

Rodriguez has drawn ire from other major-leaguers, including Boston RHP John Lackey, for playing while appealing his 211-game suspension. Dempster, a native of British Columbia, also told a Canadian sportswriter that Rodriguez once snubbed him at a charity event.

MLB senior vice president Joe Garagiola Jr. announced the penalty two days after Dempster hit Rodriguez in the second inning at Fenway Park. Yankees manager Joe Girardi was fined for arguing with plate umpire Brian O'Nora.

Dempster's fine was $2,500 and Girardi's was $5,000, the Associated Press reported.

SANTANA PLANS COMEBACK: LHP Johan Santana, out all season after having a second surgery on his shoulder capsule, intends to pitch next season, his agent, Chris Leible, told the New York Daily News. Santana, 34, a two-time Cy Young Award winner, will be a free agent.

ANGELS: OF Mike Trout was out of the starting lineup for the second straight game to rest his tight right hamstring.

BLUE JAYS: RF Jose Bautista left the first game of a doubleheader against the Yankees because of soreness in his left hip.

DODGERS: Rookie OF Yasiel Puig was out of the lineup because of a recent slump, manager Don Mattingly said. Puig also was fined for arriving late for pregame drills; he blamed traffic.

GIANTS: Former Rays RHP Chad Gaudin went on the 15-day disabled list with carpal tunnel syndrome, and OF Jeff Francoeur was designated for assignment.

INDIANS: Japanese RHP Daisuke Matsuzaka was released after going 5-8 with a 3.92 ERA in 19 starts at Triple-A Columbus.

METS: A team doctor recommended Tommy John elbow surgery for RHP Jeremy Hefner, which would keep him out through most of next season. … RHP Jenrry Mejia is scheduled to have surgery within the next 7-10 days to remove bone chips from his pitching elbow.

RANGERS: RHP Alexi Ogando went on the disabled list with nerve inflammation.

REDS: LHP Tony Cingrani strained his lower back in the fourth inning and left for treatment.

TWINS: C/1B Joe Mauer was scratched after feeling dizzy during batting practice.

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