As expected, Twins lefthander Scott Diamond was fined and handed a six-game suspension Friday by Major League Baseball for throwing near the head of Rangers outfielder Josh Hamilton.
The incident, a retaliation for Twins’ catcher Joe Mauer being hit by a pitch from Rangers’ starter Roy Oswalt in Thursday’s game, occurred in the third inning and earned Diamond an immediate ejection from the contest.
Twins manager Ron Gardenhire was also ejected by home plate umpire Wally Bell moments later, his 23rd career ejection and his third of the year.
MLB.com reports that Diamond, who is 10-5 with a 3.04 ERA in 20 starts this year, was due to begin his suspension Friday night. but he elected to file an appeal. His suspension won’t begin until the appeal process is complete.
“I probably knew it was going to come,” Diamond said. “But at this point, we’re going to go ahead and appeal it. Like I said yesterday, the pitch got away from me. I was just trying to work in and I’m glad nobody got hurt. I guess we’re just going to appeal it.”
Hamilton, who ended up with five RBIs in his team’s 10-6 victory, told ESPN he wasn’t surprised to be the target of retaliation, but that he didn’t expect to get one up by his head.
“I don’t think he was trying to hit me in the head,” Hamilton explained. “I just think the ball got away from him. But it got away from him and it was close. That’s probably the closest I’ve ever had a pitch come to me where I could feel it go behind the back of my neck.”
Watch the incident that led to Scott Diamond’s ejection and suspension in the video below: