Lackey, Kendall ejected as A's brawl past Angels

ANAHEIM, Calif. (AP) -- Jason Kendall didn't like what John

Lackey said, and he decided to do something about it.

Kendall charged the mound and wrestled with the Angels pitcher,

spicing up the Oakland Athletics' 10-3 win over Los Angeles on

Tuesday. The dugouts and bullpens emptied, followed by a lot of

pushing and shoving. No one else was ejected as a result of the

sixth-inning scuffle.

Eric Chavez hit a three-run drive for his 200th career home run

and Bobby Crosby also hit a three-run homer for Oakland, which

scored six runs in the ninth inning to break it open.

Lackey threw a pitch to Kendall that started out high and

inside, then sharply broke back toward the plate. Kendall backed

out of the batter's box, then suddenly charged the mound after

Lackey barked something at him about the elbow pad he wears while

batting. The two grabbed each other as they both tumbled to the


"I was looking for a fastball down and away because he started

me off like that the first two at-bats. Then certain things were

said. I can't repeat it, but I'm not going to let anybody talk to

me like that," Kendall said. "It's intense out there. I don't

think a lot of people really know how intense it is. But it

happened and it's over with."

Lackey said he believes he has the right to vent his opinion

about Kendall's batting stance.

"Jason has had a history of leaning out over the plate, trying

to get hit," Lackey said. "He stuck his elbow guard out over the

plate and I told him not to. He had a problem with it, and he came

out and got me. He has a right to do that, and I'm totally cool

with it."

Lackey was suspended for five games and fined for throwing at

Toronto's Simon Pond on June 24, 2004, after an earlier warning

stemming from Blue Jays pitcher Justin Miller plunking three Angels

batters. Lackey never missed a start because the Angels had an off

day after the suspension was announced and manager Mike Scioscia

adjusted his rotation accordingly.

As for Tuesday's scuffle, Scioscia said, "It's an absolute

joke. What's disturbing here is that you can let anyone charge the

pitcher and get him taken out of the game."

This wasn't the first time Kendall has charged the mound after a

pitcher complained about his leaning over the plate. It happened

two years ago with current teammate Joe Kennedy while Kennedy was

pitching for Colorado and Kendall was playing for Pittsburgh.

"It was kind of the same situation as today," Kennedy said.

"No one really knew why it happened, but it was pretty similar. I

threw a 1-2 fastball over the plate, and he leaned over and got hit

by it. I told him, `Next time get out of the way,' and he came at


"When I was running out there today, I was like, `Hey, I've

done this before with Jason.' But I was out of breath by the time I

got there, so I wouldn't have been able to do much."

Brendan Donnelly replaced Lackey on the mound and Adam Melhuse

finished Kendall's at-bat, beating the relay from second baseman

Adam Kennedy on a potential double-play grounder to drive in

Oakland's fourth run.

Brad Halsey (1-0), making a spot start for Rich Harden, allowed

three runs and five hits in 5 1-3 innings to help the A's win their

fifth straight game and finish their road trip 6-1.

The left-hander made his first nine appearances this season in

relief, allowing two runs over 12 2-3 innings, and got a chance to

start when Harden was placed on the disabled list Friday because of

a lower back strain.

Vladimir Guerrero chased Halsey in the sixth with his seventh

homer, a two-run shot that narrowed the gap to 4-3.

Lackey (3-2) was charged with four runs and six hits in 5 1-3

innings and struck out six, after giving up no more than two earned

runs in any of his previous four starts.

The right-hander, who came in 6-1 lifetime against Oakland, hit

Mark Ellis with an 0-2 pitch to open the game. Nick Swisher

followed with a single and Chavez drove a 3-2 pitch deep into the

right-field porch for his 10th homer of the season and first in 32

career at-bats against Lackey.

Chavez, only the seventh player to hit 200 homers in the

franchise's 106-year history, didn't reach double figures last

season until his 62nd game on June 12.

Ellis was plunked a second time in the ninth by J.C. Romero,

loading the bases, and Swisher followed with a sacrifice fly. Frank

Thomas singled in two runs and Crosby capped the six-run inning

with a three-run homer.

Scioscia was ejected by plate umpire Dale Scott in the bottom

half for arguing from the dugout after Robb Quinlan was hit by an

0-2 pitch from Chad Gaudin with two out. Scioscia was complaining

that Gaudin was not ejected for throwing at Quinlan.

Game Notes
Ellis needs two homers to equal Dave Collins' record for

players born in South Dakota (32). Angels CF Darin Erstad has 114

career home runs, the most by any major leaguer born in North

Dakota. "My record is going to be broken by Travis Hafner pretty

quickly," said Erstad, who is still 31 ahead of the Cleveland

Indians' first baseman. ... Oakland OF Jay Payton has 73 plate

appearances this season with no walks and just two RBI. ... Chavez

and Swisher have combined for 20 home runs and 48 RBI. ... Swisher

has reached base either with a hit or a walk in 21 straight games.