Sutcliffe glad to be back after 5-game suspension

Orioles notebook

June 23, 1993|By Peter Schmuck | Peter Schmuck,Staff Writer

Right-hander Rick Sutcliffe will return from exile tonight. He's scheduled to come back from a five-game suspension to start the second game of the three-game series against the division-leading Detroit Tigers at Camden Yards.

Sutcliffe last week chose to drop his appeal and serve the suspension he received for his part in the June 6 brawl with the Seattle Mariners.

It cost him a start Sunday against the Cleveland Indians, but it set him up to face the Tigers and miss a New York Yankees lineup that was very rough on him last year.

He agreed with manager Johnny Oates that it would be best for the club to get the suspension over with, but it wasn't easy to watch from the sidelines the past few days.

"You feel like you're kind of left out," Sutcliffe said, "but I can't say I would have done things any differently. It just came at a bad time for me."

The Orioles have won seven of his past nine starts, carrying Sutcliffe to a 7-2 record despite the highest ERA (4.70) in the rotation.

"The way things were going, you want to get out there every

other day instead of waiting nine days," Sutcliffe said, "but we've done a lot of work to stay ready."

Sutcliffe was suspended by American League president Bobby Brown along with David Segui, Alan Mills and four Mariners players. Segui and Mills still have appeals pending, but Sutcliffe accepted his punishment to avoid the possibility of the club's losing three key players at an inopportune time later in the season.

"It has given me some time to think," Sutcliffe said, "but I still don't think I'd change anything. The thing about a fight is that it is an emotional reaction. I don't know if it's something I could control."

Rhodes on right road

Left-hander Arthur Rhodes threw batting practice for 10 minutes before last night's game and continues to progress in his recovery from knee surgery.

If all goes well, he'll go through a couple days of fielding drills and then pitch a simulated game before a decision is made on the next step in his rehabilitation program.

Obando to return

Right fielder Sherman Obando is expected to return to the active roster tomorrow after spending close to a month on the disabled list with a strained hamstring.

Olson puts them up

Reliever Gregg Olson received an interesting gift in the mail from a longtime fan in Miami. It was a pair of red boxing gloves autographed by boxing trainer Angelo Dundee. On one glove, the inscription was: "For a fighter, you're a pretty good pitcher." On the other: "P.S. Jab first, save the right hand and don't forget to duck."

DJ's long wait

Former Orioles pitcher Dave Johnson, who made it back to thebig leagues with the Tigers this year, underwent arthroscopic shoulder surgery last week to repair a frayed labrum. He'll be out of action from two to three months.

"It's not career-ending," said Johnson, 33. "It's just a matter of rehabbing."

On the brighter side, Johnson is guaranteed a major-league paycheck and pension time for the bulk of the 1993 season.

Baines back in lineup

Designated hitter Harold Baines came home from Cleveland to have his left knee drained and receive an anti-inflammatory injection, but he was back in the starting lineup for last night's game.

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