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G143: Rangers lose the chair throwing game, 7-6

Last night I was watching the game on TV. About halfway through I decided to go into my computer room and listen to the game on the radio, so at about the fifth inning or so I stopped watching TV. In the top of the 9th I started watching TV again. More on that later.
This game was annoying me. We balked in a run (after two consecutive balks), hit a batter, gave up two home runs, gave up a sac fly, gave up a run on a walk, and a good ol’ single up the middle. We certainly weren’t boring in the runs we gave up. Juan Dominguez had the double balk maneuver, but I didn’t think he pitched all that bad. Wasn’t great, but wasn’t bad. I mean he did have a quality start – 6IP 2ER. Our pen though was very much not like the 2004 edition. Fracas aside, Frankie Francisco gave up a run in an inning. Mahay gave up 2 in 0.1 innings. Cordero gave up two in his 0.2IP. Not good.
We tried to win it. Soriano had the first and last runs of the game – both solo home runs. Both of Soriano’s were quite meaningful – they both had a lot of meaning behind them. Mark Teixeira continued his hot streak. Tex went 4 for 5, scoring twice. He had two doubles, a triple, and a solo shot for his lone RBI. He is by far our best offensive player at the moment. However, the most offensive part of the night belonged to Frankie Francisco.
In the ninth inning, I was listening to the radio, and Eric Nadel said “A fight has broken out in the Rangers’ bullpen”. So I immediately went back to the living room. I always TiVo every Rangers game just in case something happens (even if I don’t intend on watching it). This was the reason why. I got to see all of what the Rangers coverage showed of a melee between our bullpen and the fans in Oakland. I’m sure most of you have seen it by now, as I’m writing this at 6PM on Tuesday evening. However, the short of it is that we saw all the Ranger players run over there, and a big pileup with our guys jawing with the Oakland fans. Then the bad part. Frankie Francisco tossed a chair into the stands, and it hit two people, one woman bore the brunt of it, and TV coverage showed her bleeding fairly well from her nose. There was a 20 minute delay while security talked to Buck, the umpires and Ken Maccha. It was a mess.
Francisco was arrested on Tuesday morning, and has a court appearance on Wednesday. In my opinion he deserves to be tossed out for the rest of the season. Is he totally responsible? No. The jackasses in the fans who were taunting them are as much to blame, IMO. Yes, Francisco should be held accountable for the chair. However, the asswipes who were taunting them are the ones who REALLY caused it (and to a lesser extent stadium security which didn’t stop anything). Players get heckled and insulted all the time. That’s part of the game. Players can take that. However, for a player to respond this way there has to be some really serious crap going on. Not the usual “Your momma, you guys stink, you’re gonna lose, etc..” I’d wager it was into racial garbage, and really nasty stuff. Buck Showalter had said there were problems earlier in the game, too.
Of course we finally heard from the guy who started it. He said this in an interview.. “There was absolutely no profanity at all, just normal heckling, like ‘who’s going to take the loss?’ ‘you’re going to lose the game’ And apparently the guy who threw the chair and injured my wife wasn’t even in the bullpen in the game. Its just sad that professionals would act like that, I mean, these guys are 6’5″ we were fearing for our lives. I’m just going to concentrate on looking after my wife right now”. OH YEAH RIGHT. Like only that would have provoked someone into throwing a chair. You lying piece of shit.
Again, as much as Francisco deserves a huge penalty for throwing the chair, the fans who started it and the failure of Oakland security to prevent it from ever getting that far are to blame as well. Stupid fans. I guess the guy who threw the cel phone at Carl Everett last year in Oakland didn’t really do that, it was Carl doing it to himself, right? Jackasses.
More Stuff:
Addtl link on fight at mlb.com
Link with video of fight on mlb.com


Addtl 1:
OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) — Texas reliever Frank Francisco threw a chair at a fan in a lower box to the left of the Rangers’ bullpen along the right-field line in the ninth inning against the Oakland Athletics on Monday night.
The chair hit one man in the head, then bounced and clobbered a woman in the side of the head on her left temple.
The Rangers sprinted out of their dugout with two outs in the top of the ninth and reliever Doug Brocail could be seen screaming at a male fan. Brocail had to be restrained by his teammates and bullpen coach Mark Connor, and others also had to be held back.
Security ran to the scene and a small section of fans was cleared from their seats.
The incident caused a 19-minute delay.
A’s manager Ken Macha came across the field to speak to Dave Rinetti, vice president of stadium operations, before play resumed.
ADDTL 2:
OAKLAND — Members of the Rangers bullpen were involved in a scuffle with fans along the right-field line at Network Associates Coliseum with two outs in the ninth inning of a tie game Monday night.
The incident began when Rangers reliever Doug Brocail appeared to be engaged in a heated verbal exchange with a fan in the front section of seats located near the visitors’ bullpen.
While teammates emerged from the dugout and the bullpen to protect Brocail, a fracas at the edge of the stands broke out and television replays showed that Rangers reliever Frank Francisco threw a folding chair into the stands, appearing to strike at least one person in the head.
The game was delayed for more than 15 minutes while the teams, the umpiring crew of crew chief Joe Brinkman and the Coliseum security staff discussed how to proceed.
Public address announcer Roy Steele issued the following warning during the delay: “If any fan goes on the field at any time, the A’s will forfeit the ballgame.”
Just before the incident, the Rangers’ Alfonso Soriano had hit a solo home run to tie the game, 5-5.
ADDTL 3:
OAKLAND – Things got bizarre at Network Associates Coliseum when A’s reliever Jim Mecir allowed a game-tying home run to the Texas Rangers’ Alfonso Soriano with two outs in the top of the ninth inning Monday night.
They got downright scary just moments later.
A melee between Rangers players and fans broke out along the right-field line during a 5-5 tie of a game that ended in a 7-6, 10th-inning A’s victory. The incident delayed the game for 19 minutes and resulted in two fans being struck with a chair that replays showed was thrown by Texas reliever Frank Francisco.
A tense game pivotal to the American League West title picture suddenly erupted into chaos.
Before the game resumed, Texas pitchers were cleared from the visitors’ bullpen, and public address announcer Roy Steele warned the crowd that any fans on the field could result in an A’s forfeit.
It’s unclear how the incident began. After A’s reliever Ricardo Rincon got an 0-2 count on Hank Blalock, Texas players came flooding out of the bullpen and first-base dugout toward the small portion of field-level box seats down the right-field line.
At least one fan was pointing and taunting toward the Texas bullpen. At one point, Rangers reliever Doug Brocail was jawing with a fan. A few minutes later, reliever Carlos Almanzar had to be restrained by teammates from going after a fan.
Television replays showed that Francisco hurled a chair into the stands. It struck a female fan in the left side of her head and then ricocheted off of a male fan. According to Network Associates Coliseum vice president of stadium operations David Rinetti, the woman hit with the chair suffered a laceration to her face and a broken nose.
“I believe she wants to press charges,” said Rinetti, adding the Oakland police are involved in the investigation.
Rangers manager Buck Showalter said his team had already alerted security earlier in the game about problems with fans and that it went beyond typical fan abuse.
“From what I understand, there was some calls made to security early during the game, but I have no idea what started it out there,” umpire crew chief Joe Brinkman said.
Showalter said problems with fans are a routine occurrence in Oakland.
“It’s certainly tough to beat,” Showalter said when asked if this was the ugliest fan incident he’s seen as a manager. “Last year the (cell phone) they threw at Carl Everett. Down at the bullpen it was a pretty ugly scene. You could see the look (on fans’ faces), it’s sad.”
Francisco was driven away from the Coliseum in a car for his own safety but reportedly was not arrested.
Order eventually was restored, and after a Blalock single, A’s reliever Chad Bradford entered the game and retired Michael Young for the third out of the inning. Security personnel lined the field as Texas reliever Brian Shouse warmed up to start the bottom of the ninth.
The incident marred what turned into a nail-biter of a ballgame.
Trailing 4-2, the A’s scored three runs in the bottom of the eighth to forge a 5-4 lead.
Scott Hatteberg drove in a run with a single to cut Texas’ lead to one. With the bases loaded, Almanzar’s pitch hit Nick Swisher above his right ankle to tie the game. Bobby Crosby then lined a sacrifice fly to give Oakland a 5-4 lead.
Mecir got the first two outs (on strikeouts) in the top of the ninth but then allowed the game-tying homer to Soriano on a 2-0 pitch. Soriano also led the game off with a homer off A’s starter Tim Hudson.
Texas re-claimed the lead 6-5 in the top of the 10th when Mark Teixeira hit a leadoff triple and eventually scored on Brian Jordan’s fielder’s choice ground ball.
But the A’s came right back in the bottom half of the inning and loaded the bases. Mark McLemore then drew a walk to tie the game 6-6, and after Mark Kotsay and Eric Byrnes made out, Eric Chavez singled to center score Swisher with the winning run.
“I don’t know about rivalry, but all these games are going to be intense from here on out,” said Chavez, who had been just 2-for-26 on the current homestand. “It was almost like a kickoff of a football game.”
ADDTL 4:
OAKLAND, Calif. – Texas reliever Frank Francisco threw a chair into the right field box seats, hitting two spectators in the head Monday night, as Oakland Athletics (news) fans taunted the visitors after a two-out, top-of-the-ninth homer tied the game.
One of the fans, an unidentified woman, was bloodied and her nose was broken.
Major league baseball’s commissioner’s office said Tuesday morning it was investigating.
With two outs in the ninth, Texas Ranger Alfonso Soriano tied the game at 5 on his second homer of the night. Moments later, with the Rangers’ Hank Blalock at the plate, the Texas bench and bullpen cleared.
“Tonight, it went over the line,” Rangers manager Buck Showalter said. “It was a real break from the normal trash you hear from fans. We’ve had problems about every time we’ve come here.”
Texas reliever Doug Brocail was seen screaming at a male fan, and the pitcher had to be restrained by his teammates and bullpen coach Mark Connor. Others also had to be held back.
Francisco threw the chair at a fan in a lower box near the Rangers’ bullpen along the right-field line. The chair hit one man in the head, then bounced and struck the woman on her left temple.
Security ran to the scene and a small section of fans was cleared from their seats.
A’s manager Ken Macha came across the field to speak to Dave Rinetti, vice president of stadium operations, before play resumed 19 minutes later.
There was talk between the umpires and managers of suspending the game, clearing the stands and forfeiting the game.
The Athletics won 7-6 in the 10th inning.
Rinetti said afterward that the woman was being treated at a hospital for facial cuts and a broken nose and was considering pressing charges. Francisco was escorted by police out an alternate stadium exit after the game and into a car waiting on the field. No arrests were made.
Brocail declined comment, and Francisco wasn’t around the locker room afterward.
Francisco, 25, was named American League rookie of the month for August, when he was 3-0 with a 1.69 earned-run average.