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Sullivan, Hunter Suspended in Brawl

July 20, 2000

DENVER (AP) _ Colorado Rockies outfielder Brian Hunter and Cincinnati Reds reliever Scott Sullivan were suspended for three games for fighting last week at Coors Field.

Both players also were fined Wednesday by Frank Robinson, baseball’s vice president of on-field operations.

Hunter charged the mound after being hit with a pitch near his head in the seventh inning of Cincinnati’s 7-4 victory over the Rockies on Saturday. Sullivan met Hunter halfway between the mound and home plate and landed a couple of grazing blows before the two were engulfed by teammates.

Sullivan, who denied hitting Hunter intentionally, and Hunter were ejected, along with Colorado first baseman Todd Helton and Rockies manager Buddy Bell. Neither Helton nor Bell was penalized.

Sullivan, in Houston as the Reds opened a two-game series against the Astros, said he planned to appeal his punishment.

``I’m not sure how the process really works,″ Sullivan said. ``This is my first rodeo in this event. I’m sure I’ll become more aware of the process as time goes by.″

The Rockies were in Los Angeles on Wednesday to play the first of two against the Dodgers. Hunter was not immediately available for comment after his suspension was announced.

Hunter had some strong comments after Saturday’s game, saying he expected to get hit after Colorado reliever Stan Belinda plunked Cincinnati star Ken Griffey Jr. in the top of the seventh.

Had Sullivan hit him in the leg, Hunter said, he would have gone to first, but he planned to hit Sullivan with the bill of his helmet if the ball was anywhere near his head.

``It really crossed my mind to go with my helmet and try to get hit him and maybe knock an eyeball out or something,″ Hunter said.

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