What irked Oates most was the fact Chris Hoiles suffered a fractured right wrist and will be out four to six weeks after being struck by one of Leary's apparently scuffed balls that darted in abnormally when the catcher was batting.
"It seems innocent people like Chris take the short straw in a case like this," Oates said. "There is no doubt that Hoiles was hit by a scuffed ball.
"If our protest isn't upheld, all pitchers will take it as a license to doctor baseballs. They'll just have to put whatever they're using in their mouth if they're checked."
In his playing days as a catcher, Oates said, he occasionally handled pitchers who might have been applying foreign substances to the balls.
"When I was catching a guy who was accused of that, I thought it was fun," Oates said. "But I look at it differently now. This time a guy got hurt, and we sent the ball that hit him to Dr. Brown."
Leo Gomez returned to third base last night, batting in the seventh spot, after missing two games with a jammed shoulder. Gomez has dislocated his left shoulder three times and now the right (throwing) one once. Because of that medical history, the doctor persuaded him to sit out two games instead of one.
Gomez went 1-for-2 and scored the winning run after a walk and the second steal of his big-league career in the ninth inning.
'Devo,' Hall honored
The Orioles' Mike Devereaux and the Yankees' Mel Hall were named co-AL Players of the Week for the June 15-21 period.
Devereaux batted .393, knocked in seven runs and scored six. His 11 hits included three doubles, a triple and two home runs. Hall batted .370 and had 10 hits, including three doubles, and scored six runs.
In his final two games of the week, against the Orioles, Hall went 6-for-7, with seven RBI. Hall and Devereaux, who continued their hot hitting with 2-for-4 and 2-for-5 performances, respectively, last night, will receive Bulova wrist watches to commemorate their awards.
Others who received consideration were Orioles shortstop Cal Ripken, the Toronto Blue Jays' Roberto Alomar and Chicago White Sox's Frank Thomas. Ripken batted .519 with a league-high 14 hits and Thomas and Alomar both hit .444.
Bill gets a break
Oates decided "it was time" to spell Bill Ripken at second base with Mark McLemore last night. Ripken is 2-for-15 in his past five games, 5-for-32 in his past 11. He has one RBI in the past 14 games. Including his 1-for-3 last night, McLemore has only 19 at-bats this month, but six hits.
"I'd say it [Ripken's slump] has something to do with it," Oates said of the switch.
Dempsey fans come calling
The freshly activated Rick Dempsey got a call from his mother and a "few friends" from his National League days in acknowledgement of the promotion. One of the callers was pitcher Tim Belcher, once Dempsey's teammate with the Dodgers and now a member of the Cincinnati Reds.
"Belcher told me he hopes we'll meet in the World Series," Dempsey said, "because he wants the chance to knock me down one more time."
AL All-Star voting
Voting results released Sunday for the starting American League team for the 63rd All-Star Game, to be played July 14 at San Diego:
1, Sandy Alomar, Cleveland, 308,965. 2, Ivan Rodriguez, Texas, 251,575. 3, Carlton Fisk, Chicago, 203,621. 4, Pat Borders, Toronto, 171,127. 5, Chris Hoiles, Orioles, 149,013. 6, Mickey Tettleton, Detroit, 118,378. 7, Tony Pena, Boston, 112,806. 8, Brian Harper, Minnesota, 109,247.
1, Mark McGwire, Oakland, 559,180. 2, Frank Thomas, Chicago, 235,466. 3, Cecil Fielder, Detroit, 180,031. 4, Rafael Palmeiro, Texas, 174,401. 5, Don Mattingly, New York, 139,392. 6, John fTC Olerud, Toronto, 127,467. 7, Kent Hrbek, Minnesota, 119,551. 8, Wally Joyner, Kansas City, 74,243.
1, Roberto Alomar, Toronto, 631,647. 2, Chuck Knoblauch, Minnesota, 225,895. 3, Steve Sax, Chicago, 201,617. 4, Julio Franco, Texas, 174,002. 5, Bill Ripken, Orioles, 127,000. 6, Lance Blankenship, Oakland, 61,403. 7, Pat Kelly, New York, 51,398. 8, Lou Whitaker, Detroit, 48,530.
1, Cal Ripken, Orioles, 891,023. 2, Manuel Lee, Toronto, 142,171. 3, Dickie Thon, Texas, 140,682. 4, Greg Gagne, Minnesota, 116,460. 5, Ozzie Guillen, Chicago, 91,296. 6, Alan Trammell, Detroit, 83,518. 7, Bill Spiers, Milwaukee, 67,209. 8, Walt Weiss, Oakland, 58,646.
1, Wade Boggs, Boston, 445,299. 2, Robin Ventura, Chicago, 251,054. 3, Kelly Gruber, Toronto, 222,039. 4, Carney Lansford, Oakland, 157,006. 5, Dean Palmer, Texas, 153,392. 6, Mike Pagliarulo, Minnesota, 79,702. 7, Gary Gaetti, California, 70,986. 8, Charlie Hayes, New York, 70,406.
1, Ken Griffey, Seattle, 665,337. 2, Kirby Puckett, Minnesota, 588,367. 3, Jose Canseco, Oakland, 331,440. 4, Dave Winfield, Toronto, 324,057. 5, Ruben Sierra, Texas, 304,419. 6, Joe Carter, Toronto, 289,169. 7, Rickey Henderson, Oakland, 271,747. 8, Juan Gonzalez, Texas, 172,063.
9, Devon White, Toronto, 158,718. 10, Shane Mack, Minnesota, 155,863. 11, George Bell, Chicago, 137,127. 12, Brady Anderson, Orioles, 118,689. 13, Roberto Kelly, New York, 116,368. 14, Tim Raines, Chicago, 107,937. 15, Danny Tartabull, New York, 100,868. 16, Robin Yount, Milwaukee, 91,313.