Mazzilli: White Sox hit Surhoff intentionally

ORIOLES NOTEBOOK

Buehrle ejected as run of long starts ends at 49

Notebook

August 02, 2005|By Jeff Zrebiec | Jeff Zrebiec,SUN STAFF

If you asked Orioles manager Lee Mazzilli, there was little doubt that Chicago pitcher Mark Buehrle was intentionally throwing at B.J. Surhoff in the sixth inning of the White Sox's 6-3 victory at Camden Yards yesterday.

"It seemed like he was," said Mazzilli, whose pitchers hit White Sox batters in each of the final two games of the series.

"It looked like it was tit for tat. The thing is the first two [White Sox hit] were not thrown at. The third one [Surhoff] was."

Plate umpire Brian Gorman agreed with Mazzilli, ejecting Buehrle from the game after he hit Surhoff in the back of his left arm with Sammy Sosa on first and two outs. Surhoff essentially told reporters to make their own judgements when he was asked about it after the game.

The ejection, the first of Buehrle's career, broke the left-hander's streak in which he had pitched at least six innings in 49 consecutive starts. In the top of the sixth inning, Orioles starter Daniel Cabrera hit Chicago catcher A.J. Pierzynski in the right arm with a 3-0 pitch, but there were no warnings issued to either bench.

"If there had been warnings issued and I hit a guy, yeah [I would understand], but to go out there and do what they did, and then I hit a guy, and I guess they looked at it as intentional," Buehrle said.

Said White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen: "That [ejection] was shocking. You don't want to hit a guy with two outs and the tying run at first base. They told me they're trying to protect the players and do their job. So do we. They can think what they want."

On Sunday night, Guillen accused Todd Williams of hitting Tadahito Iguchi on purpose. Mazzilli said that he didn't have a problem with Guillen sticking up for his players, but disputed his assertion, saying, "I don't think there's any basis for that at all." He also felt that Cabrera hitting Pierzynski was unintentional.

"None at all," the Orioles manager said when asked if there was some intent behind the pitch. "No reason to, really. You have a 3-0 count and you are going to put the go-ahead run at second base? That's not smart pitching if you are going to do that."

Rotation in flux

Both injuries and ineffectiveness have forced Mazzilli to juggle the Orioles' rotation. With Cabrera starting yesterday in Bruce Chen's usual spot in the rotation, Sidney Ponson will take the mound tonight, followed by Erik Bedard and then Rodrigo Lopez.

Chen, who pitched five innings of relief on Saturday and Sunday, will start the first game against Texas on Friday.

"Believe it or not, I think [Sunday's] outing, and the day before, was very helpful for me," said Chen, who pitched 3 2/3 innings of scoreless relief on Sunday.

"I've been trying to get my release point, and I think throwing back-to-back days helped me."

Matos sits again

Orioles center fielder Luis Matos didn't start for the third straight game as Mazzilli wanted to give him another day to rest his sore right thumb. He'll likely be back in the lineup tonight against the Angels.

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