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Class A Peoria's Sandberg suspended by Midwest League

Ryne Sandberg has been ejected seven times as the manager at Class A Peoria. Sandberg was ejected twice as a player. AP Photo/Peoria Journal Star, Fred Zwicky

Having surpassed the ejection total of his Hall of Fame playing career long ago, Ryne Sandberg appears to be prepping for a genuine career as a minor league manager.

Sandberg, in his second year at the helm of the Class A Peoria Chiefs, has been suspended three games by the Midwest League after a bench-clearing incident Thursday that started when the former Cubs second baseman confronted Clinton LumberKings manager Mike Micucci in the late innings of a 7-3 loss.

According to the Chicago Tribune, Sandberg and Micucci apparently bumped while arguing after the LumberKings had bunted with a 6-0 lead.

It resulted in Sandberg's third ejection of the season and seventh at Peoria. Sandberg was ejected twice in 2,164 games during 16 years as a player.

"It was verbal, nothing more," Cubs vice president of player personnel Oneri Fleita told the Tribune. "It's not a big deal to me. Defending his players is what a manager is supposed to do."

Sandberg, suspended two games last May for bumping an umpire, missed Saturday's game in Clinton and was to sit out games Sunday and Monday.