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Tuesday, March 11
Updated: March 12, 9:53 AM ET
 
Guerrero rushes Penny after being hit by pitch

Associated Press

VIERA, Fla. -- Vladimir Guerrero was ejected in the first inning Monday for starting a bench-clearing brawl during the Montreal Expos' 7-4 win against the Florida Marlins.

Vladimir Guerrero
Vladimir Guerrero is restrained by Marlins catcher Matt Treanor before prying himself loose to throw a punch at Brad Penny.

Brad Penny's second pitch to Guerrero hit the Montreal slugger high in the chest.

Guerrero, still holding his bat in his left hand, said a few words to Penny as catcher Matt Treanor tried to restrain the batter. After Penny got closer, Guerrero swung his right fist around the catcher at the pitcher, missing. Penny retaliated with punch that missed, and the benches emptied.

"I'm not trying to hit a guy in spring training, especially not in the first inning," Penny said. "I'm out trying to throw inside. The first pitch he didn't like, and he stared me down. Then, I barely touched his shirt. He came out. If I wanted to hit him, I would have thrown a two-seam fastball.

"When I face him (during the season), I'm not going to be afraid to throw inside," Penny said. "Nobody's that good that you can't pitch him inside."

Guerrero thought the first pitch was too high and tight.

"He first threw me up and in, very close," Guerrero said. "It barely touched my shirt. It was the principle. I felt it was intentional. I expect pitches inside, but I felt it was in the head area."

Expos manager Frank Robinson was surprised Guerrero rushed the mound, but he understood why.

"After watching it last year, I think pitchers take their liberties," Robinson said. "The pitcher thinks, 'I'll go inside and if I hit him, I hit him. If he's hurt, he's out of the lineup, and we have a better chance of winning.' "

Guerrero and Penny were the only ejections.

Expos starter T.J. Tucker gave up four runs in the first inning, but Montreal relievers shut down the Marlins.

Zach Day pitched three shutout innings, winner Britt Reames pitched two, and Dan Smith and Eric Knott, who got the save, threw one inning each.

Florida scored on an RBI double by Juan Pierre, a two-run triple by Juan Encarnacion and a solo homer by Todd Hollandsworth.

Montreal scored four runs in the second inning. Justin Wayne, who relieved Penny, gave up three hits and three walks, one with the bases loaded. Valentino Pascucci tied the game with a two-run double.

The Expos pulled ahead when Jeff Liefer snapped out of his 0-for-18 slump with an RBI double off loser Juan Alvarez.






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