SEATTLE -- Daniel Cabrera said Friday he's elected to appeal his six-game suspension, letting the league office know he'd like a hearing to discuss the penalty handed down for his ejection at Yankee Stadium on Tuesday. Cabrera was thrown out of his last start for hitting Alex Rodriguez with a pitch, a plunking that even Rodriguez said likely was an accident.
The Yankees appeared to retaliate in the following game, and reliever Edwar Ramirez was suspended three games for apparently throwing at Baltimore first baseman Kevin Millar. Ramirez also decided to appeal his suspension, and Cabrera said Friday he's looking forward to his next start and hoping to have his sanction reduced or removed.
"As soon as I got suspended, I called my agent first thing in the morning and appealed right away," Cabrera said. "I think everybody knows except the umpire that when the ball hit A-Rod, I didn't try to hit him. But there are a lot of people in that ballpark. Maybe he got a little nervous, I don't know, and he agreed to do it. What can I do? Just wait and see what happens."
Cabrera, who also was suspended six games last year for his part in a bench-clearing incident in a game against the Red Sox, said he was surprised by the umpire's decision and even more alarmed by the league's decision to discipline him.
"It was a surprise. I didn't think I'd ever get suspended for that, but they did," he said. "Now I'll appeal and wait and see what happens. They work for baseball. They do what they think. I just play. I'll wait and see what happens."
If his appeal is successful, Cabrera may have his penalty reduced or even eliminated. Otherwise, the Orioles will be forced to do without their workhorse for one rotation turn, a move that could have a ripple effect on the rest of their arms.
Baltimore manager Dave Trembley said Cabrera will start Sunday as planned, and then the Orioles will reorder their rotation. Trembley said he'd discussed the situation with Andy MacPhail, the team's president of baseball operations, and was led to believe the suspension was all but guaranteed because of the nature of the ejection.
"He told me that the rule from the commissioner's office -- and Bob Watson handles those things -- is when someone gets ejected from the game for intentionally throwing at a hitter, there is a suspension that goes along with that," he said. "When you get thrown out, you automatically are going to get suspended. So that's part of the penalty."
Spencer Fordin is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.