Originally created 08/05/98

Bonds, Bottalico get suspended for brawl



San Francisco outfielder Barry Bonds was suspended for three games and Philadelphia reliever Ricky Bottalico was suspended for four because of their brawl last weekend.

NL president Len Coleman, who also fined the players $1,000 each, determined Bottalico threw at Bonds during Sunday's game, instigating a sixth-inning brawl.

Bonds was penalized for charging the mound.

While the suspensions were to start Wednesday, the players' association appealed the penalties.

COUNSELL'S JAW WIRED SHUT:

Florida Marlins second baseman Craig Counsell's jaw was broken when hit by a fastball, and he won't be able to eat solid food for five weeks, the team said Tuesday.

An oral surgeon and plastic surgeon performed surgery and wired Counsell's jaw shut after he was injured Monday on a pitch from C.J. Nitkowski of the Houston Astros.

Counsell is expected to make a full recovery, and there's a chance he'll play again this season, the Marlins said. They placed him on the 15-day disabled list and recalled second baseman Luis Castillo.

FRANCO GETS NEW DEAL:

John Franco signed a two-year contract extension with the Mets on Tuesday, a deal that should keep the closer in New York through the 2000 season.

Franco, baseball's career saves leader among left-handers, had been eligible for free agency at the end of this season.

HOW MUCH FOR NO. 62?

If Mark McGwire breaks Roger Maris' record, somebody else will have to pony up the big bucks for home run ball No. 62.

"I wouldn't pay a dime for it," he said.

Joseph Burr, a sports memorabilia collector from suburban Milwaukee, likens the record-breaking ball to a winning lottery ticket.

"Some kid's going to become an instant millionaire," he said. "It's easily over $1 million."

SHEFFIELD SUSPENDED:

Gary Sheffield's three-game suspension and $1,000 fine was upheld Tuesday by NL president Len Coleman, and the Los Angeles Dodgers outfielder immediately started serving the penalty.

Sheffield was suspended for fighting and starting a bench-clearing brawl during a game between Pittsburgh and Los Angeles on June 28. Coleman heard the appeal Monday.

Jason Kendall of the Pirates already served his three-game suspension.

MCKEON OFFERED EXTENSION:

The Cincinnati Reds have offered manager Jack McKeon another one-year contract extension.

McKeon, 67, said he'll talk to general manager Jim Bowden about the offer when the team returns from a three-game series in Atlanta this week.

McKeon took over for Ray Knight midway through last season and got a one-year extension.