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Sunday, August 26, 2012
Sox's Ventura could face suspension

By Bruce Levine



CHICAGO -- The ejection of White Sox manager Robin Ventura Saturday night could lead to a short suspension after an altercation with home-plate umpire Lance Barrett and crew chief Jim Joyce. Ventura was responding to a quick ejection of catcher A.J. Pierzynski by Barrett. During the argument, Joyce put himself in between the Sox manager and Barrett causing some physical contact.

The perception of the events by Major League Baseball and executive Joe Torre will determine the fine and possible suspension. Past instances in which managers have had prolonged arguments have been met with two- or three-game suspensions. It is not necessary to make contact in order to receive a suspension.

In Ventura’s case, it would seem that a more lenient view may be taken. Joyce inserted himself between the initial umpire involved and Ventura.

“I told Robin he could talk to Lance over my shoulder,” Joyce said on Saturday. “I wanted to separate the two to diffuse what was going on.”

“I had no issue with what Jim was doing,” Ventura said. “He was doing his job and I am doing mine.”

Although Ventura has been ejected three times in his first year as a manager, the perception of the White Sox’s manager among the umpiring fraternity is not one of a trouble-maker.

Asked if he thought a suspension was pending, Ventura was unsure.

“I don’t know, I don’t know,” he said. “We will find out.”

On Sunday, it sounded as though there aren’t any hard feelings on either side after the ejection.

“I told Jim during (during the confrontation) that I don’t want to bump you,” Ventura said. “(Joyce) said ‘you are not bumping me.’ It was more of a dance than it was a bump.”

As demonstrative as Ventura was on Saturday, he said he has no plans to go over the top.

“I remember (Lou Piniella’s outbursts) were good. They were really good. I don’t think I have any base tossing in my future,” Ventura said