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Rangers expect word on possible sanctions Friday

ARLINGTON, Texas -- Kenny Rogers' immediate future will be
determined by Major League Baseball, and the Texas Rangers expect
their ace to be suspended for his angry outburst that sent a
television cameraman to the hospital.

Rangers owner Tom Hicks talked with commissioner Bud Selig
multiple times Thursday, and found out that baseball has
jurisdiction since the incident occurred on the field. Hicks said a
decision on possible discipline is expected Friday, but he
anticipated that Rogers would be suspended.

"At this point there's nothing the Texas Rangers will or can
do," he said. "We will support whatever the commissioner decides
to do."

Surrounded by cameras Thursday after the Rangers' 18-5 victory
over the Los Angeles Angels, Rogers joked around with teammates in
the clubhouse but didn't respond to questions from reporters.

The 40-year-old left-hander traveled with the team to Seattle,
where he's scheduled to pitch the series finale Sunday. He wasn't
seen in the clubhouse before Thursday's game or in the dugout
during it.

In a statement Friday, Rogers' attorneys said: "Kenny Rogers would like to make a statement. However, in light of the ongoing investigation, it is not advisable for Kenny to comment directly and publicly at this time.

"On Kenny's behalf, though, we would like to express to Mr. Rodriguez, Ranger fans, all baseball fans and his teammates that Kenny is truly sorry for the incident that occurred and regrets that it happened."

Rogers shoved two cameramen before Wednesday's game against the
Angels in a tirade that included throwing a camera to the ground,
kicking it and threatening to break more. The outburst was captured
on videotape.

KDFW cameraman Larry Rodriguez, treated at a hospital for pain
in his shoulder, arm and leg, filed an assault report Wednesday,
Arlington police spokeswoman Christy Gilfour said.

"Although it is very early in the investigation, at this point,
it appears we are investigating a misdemeanor assault case,"
Gilfour said in a statement Thursday.

No charges had been filed.

"He made it very clear to me that he did the wrong thing and it
was inappropriate," general manager John Hart said. "It was out
of character, way out of character for Kenny."

Hart said Rogers was upset of the perception that he missed his
start Tuesday night for some reason other than the broken pinkie in
his non-throwing hand, sustained in an angry outburst after a game
two weeks ago.

"That's the crux of the matter for Kenny," he said.

Rogers has sought a contract extension from the Rangers, and
some media and fans viewed his missing a start against the
first-place Angels as a possible ploy in negotiations.

Rogers hasn't spoken to most media since before spring training,
when the pitcher met with Hicks and asked about an extension to his
two-year contract that expires after this season. He denied a
report that he threatened to retire and has since quit talking
publicly.

Hart said there had been some recent talks with Rogers' agent,
Scott Boras, about a new contract but that there would be no more
discussion about a new deal until after the season.

"Our vision of where the dollars are and his are too far
apart," Hart said. "With that, compounded by the last several
days, we're going to table any contract talks until the end of the
year."

Before giving up six runs on 10 hits in 3 1/3 innings at Los
Angeles on June 22, Rogers (9-3) had won nine straight decisions, a
career best, and was the AL ERA leader.

It wasn't known until Rogers pulled out of his last start that
he pitched last week with the broken bone in his hand. The injury
was sustained when he punched a water cooler in the dugout after
being taken out in the seventh inning of his last win, June 17
against Washington.

Manager Buck Showalter said he met recently with Rogers for
about 40 minutes in his office, and acknowledged there were
indications that the pitcher was emotionally troubled by something.
Showalter didn't elaborate.

"Unfortunately, it didn't get dealt with very well yesterday,"
Showalter said, refusing to say if there was anything outside of
baseball affecting the pitcher.

Rogers lashed out at the cameramen Wednesday as they filmed him
walking to the field for pregame stretching.

The pitcher first shoved Fox Sports Net Southwest photographer
David Mammeli, telling him: "I told you to get those cameras out
of my face." Rogers then approached Rodriguez, wrestling the
camera from him, throwing it to the ground and kicking it. Mammeli
wasn't injured.

He wasn't scheduled to pitch and was sent home by the club.

"I do know that I support him 100 percent as a teammate. ...
He's been nothing but an ideal teammate to me," shortstop Michael
Young said. "His relationship with the press, it would be
difficult for me to comment on.

"As far as I'm concerned, I just want to move forward and
forget about it," he said. "I want all of our attention to be on
baseball."

The Rangers won 7-6 in 11 innings Wednesday night, and followed
that with Thursday's game for a split in the four-game series with
the AL West-leading Angels. Texas had lost nine of 10 games before
that, dropping from 1½ to 8½ games behind.