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Saturday, June 16, 2007

Punches Exchanged Between San Diego Padres and Chicago Cubs

By David

First it was a brawl between teammates Carlos Zambrano and Michael Barrett. Now the Cubs have focused their attention to fighting with their opponents.

In Saturday's 1-0 lose first baseman Derrek Lee retaliated from an inside pitch thrown by the Padres' Chris Young by attacking him. It was a battle of heavyweights with Lee registering at 6-foot-5 and Young 6-foot-10.

After being plunked on the side of the head by Young's fastball Lee gingerly walked down the first base line starring the Padres right-hander square in the face. By all indications Young said some inappropriate words to Lee and that triggered a benches clearing brawl where both men began to take cheap shots at each other.

Luckily, no punches were landed cleanly, but according to http://www.mlb.com/ San Diego's Jake Peavy was seen sucker-punching the Cubs first baseman. When the melee was over and the umpires had seperated both teams four people in total were ejected.

The Padres' two best starting pitchers, Chris Young and Jake Peavy were tossed from the game, while the Cubs' biggest offensive threat Derrek Lee and hitting Gerald Perry were ejected for their inexcusable actions.

The one major shock from this incident was that the two players who instigated the brawl are two of the best behaved and like able players throughout MLB. Young and Lee are stand up guys who represent the game of baseball in the best possible light and would never be suspected of fighting.

The unfortunate part of this fracas is that lengthy suspensions are sure to loom. Even though San Diego might lose Young for only one start, the Cubs will be without their power hitting first baseman for the next 3-5 games. Third baseman Aramis Ramirez is currently on the disabled list with left patellar tendinitis and will not be available to return until this weekend at the earliest.

At 31-36 and 6.5 games behind the upstart Brewers for the division lead the Cubbies can ill afford to lose one of their premier players. This deplorable incident should serve as a remainder to all little leaguers that the actions of big leaguers on television are not always correct and should not be condoned.

L.A. Angels Defeat L.A. Dodgers In Battle Of Right-Handers

By David

The Freeway Series continues to sway the Angels way as they defeated their cross town rival for the fourth time this season.

24-year old right-hander Jered Weaver pitched 5.1 scoreless innings, allowing only four hits along the way as he improved his record to 6-3. Darren Oliver, Scot Shields and closer Francisco Rodriguez combined to pitch 3.2 innings of one-hit baseball as the Angels defeated the struggling Dodgers 3-0.

In front of 56,000 fans L.A.'s biggest off-season addition Jason Schmidt was searching for his first victory at Dodger Stadium Saturday afternoon. The right-hander lasted a mere 4.2 innings as he surrendered 3 earned runs, five hits and four walks to raise his E.R.A. to a dismal 6.31. He is now 1-4 on the season and 0-4 at home with a 10.43 E.R.A.

Out of their five starting pitchers(Lowe, Penny, Wolf, Schimidt, Kuo), Jason has the highest salary, highest expectations and highest E.R.A. The former all-star signed a 3-year, $47 million contract during the Winter and he has caused nothing but headaches for the team and fantasy owners through the first 10 weeks of the season.

Conversely, the Angels pitching staff is clicking on all cylinders and the ball club is riding high with a record of 43-26. They sport a 4.5 game lead over the A's in the ardent AL West and their 24-9 home record is the best in baseball.

Anaheim's starting five of Lackey, Escobar, Weaver, Colon and Santana are hungry for a return to the World Series and that has been indicative by their play on the field. Kelvim Escobar is 7-3 with a 2.89 E.R.A. and ace pitcher John Lackey is 10-4 with an anemic 2.53 earned run average. Lackey's ten victories are tops in MLB and his E.R.A. is fifth best in the majors.

If the Angels continue on their torrid pace they very well could be representing the American League in this year's Fall Classic.

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