Halos' Weaver to appeal six-game suspension
Angels ace also fined for pitch near head of Tigers' Avila
ANAHEIM -- Angels right-hander Jered Weaver was suspended six games and fined an undisclosed amount of money for throwing at Tigers catcher Alex Avila, Major League Baseball announced on Tuesday.
Weaver has decided to appeal the suspension, but if the suspension is upheld, he's expected to miss only one start. His next start is scheduled for Friday's series opener against the Mariners.
"I knew that there was going to be something [punishment]," he said. "It is what it is ... I kind of wanted my voice heard a little bit in the situation -- see how they feel about it -- and then go from there."
In addition to Weaver's suspension, Angels manager Mike Scioscia has been suspended one game for the intentional actions of Weaver after a warning had been issued to both clubs by home-plate umpire Hunter Wendelstedt on Sunday in Detroit. Scioscia served his suspension during the Angels' game Tuesday night against the Twins.
Scioscia called his suspension "standard operating procedure." Bench coach Rob Picciolo took over his duties for Tuesday's game.
During the bottom of the seventh on Sunday, Weaver threw a pitch over the head of Avila after a solo homer by Carlos Guillen that gave the Tigers a 3-0 lead on their way to a 3-2 victory.
Guillen stood and admired his second homer of the season as it arced toward the right-field seats. When he finally began his home-run trot, he flipped his bat and danced out of the batter's box, catching Weaver's attention. It was the second time in the game Weaver had taken exception to the way a Detroit batter seemingly admired a home run.
Wendelstedt strode to the mound to warn Weaver and both dugouts after Guillen finally circled the bases. But Weaver threw the next pitch in the area of Avila's head and was immediately ejected.
After the ejection, Weaver yelled toward the Detroit dugout as he angrily walked off the mound and headed to the dugout.
"Baseball's a game of emotions," he said. "I'm not one to usually let the emotions get the best of me. I've had a pretty calm career so far. There's just some things that kind of cross the line and I thought maybe that was one of those things and didn't want to take that. I did what I did and obviously have to pay the repercussions for it."
Weaver said he wasn't trying to hurt Avila, who caught the Angels' right-hander as Weaver started last month's All-Star Game.
"I've always said I'm not here to hurt anybody," Weaver said. "If I wanted to hit him, I could have hit him. I tried to throw a fastball in, and it got up and away. Probably looked a little worse than it was -- it was clearly about a foot or two over his head.
"I just felt like I needed to prove a point."
Scioscia wasn't too keen on Guillen's home-run trot either, saying, "I think flamboyant is not a strong enough word."
"I think the culture of this game has changed a bit where hitters do stand and look at home runs occasionally. It's become more of an accepted practice than it was certainly 30 and 40 years ago," Scioscia said. "That being said, we're not about bean balls ... We're going to pay a price for Weav trying to send a statement to the other side that he didn't agree with what they were doing."
In the third inning, Magglio Ordonez also watched a home run soar toward left for a 2-0 Tigers lead. In that case, however, there was some question whether it would land fair or foul.
Weaver stared down Ordonez as he embarked on his home-run trot and yapped at him as he circled the bases.
Ordonez said afterward he was "just making sure it was a fair ball." Weaver interpreted the events differently.
"If he [Ordonez] was looking to see if it goes fair or foul I think you guys could disagree with that one a little bit," Weaver said. " ... He can say what he wants to say, but I know it was going out."
Weaver said he hadn't been informed of a date for his appeal hearing, though he's supposed to meet with officials when the team makes its trip to New York for a three-game series Aug. 9-11.
"They have an opinion about what happened and I have an opinion about what happened," Weaver said. "I just want to let them know how I feel about how it went down and see where it goes from there."
The 28-year-old is 14-5 this season with a 1.88 ERA, the best in the American League entering Tuesday.