By TOM WITHERS AP Sports Writer
CLEVELAND (AP) — Tim Anderson’s decision to pick a fight with José Ramírez cost him more than a sore jaw.
Chicago’s shortstop was suspended six games and Ramírez for three games by Major League Baseball for throwing punches and touching off a lengthy, wild brawl between the White Sox and Guardians on Saturday night.
Major League Baseball announced the discipline for Anderson and Ramírez on Monday, along with other suspensions and fines following one of baseball’s ugliest fights in several years.
Anderson and Ramírez also were fined an undisclosed amount. Both players are appealing.
Anderson was handed the harsher penalty for instigating the fight as he and Ramirez faced off in the middle of the infield like boxers inside the ropes. Anderson connected with a couple punches before Ramirez dropped him with a blow to the face.
Also, Cleveland manager Terry Francona, Guardians closer Emmanuel Clase and third base coach Mike Sarbaugh have been suspended one game each. Chicago manager Pedro Grifol was also suspended for one game.
In addition, White Sox pitcher Michael Kopech and Guardians rookie Gabriel Arias have been fined an undisclosed amount for their actions.
Francona and Clase will serve their suspensions Monday when the Guardians open a four-game series with Toronto. Grifol also will serve his suspension Monday when the White Sox host the New York Yankees. Sarbaugh intends to sit on Tuesday.
“When something like that happens, there’s going to be a price to be paid,” said Francona, who expressed gratitude that Michael Hill, MLB vice president of on-field operations, had reached out to him.
Francona didn’t offer opinion on the severity of Ramírez’s penalty.
“He’s going to appeal,” he said. “My hope is that he always can lower it because he’s such a good player. I thought they seemed to me to be extremely conscientious in what they were doing, at least when I talked to them.
“If you’re the home team or you want your guys to get none, you want them to get 20. That’s probably not the way it’s going to work.”
Losing Ramírez for as much as a series is another challenge for the Guardians, who are trying to stay connected with the first-place Minnesota Twins in the AL Central. Cleveland begins the week 4 1/2 games back.
The White Sox are 23 games under .500 and already planning toward next season after moving some veterans at the trade deadline.
This is Anderson’s third suspension since 2019.
The two-time All-Star was suspended for one game four years ago when his bat flip after a home run against Kansas City led to him being hit with a pitch and triggering a benches-clearing altercation. Last season, Anderson made an obscene gesture toward fans in Cleveland and got a one-game ban.
Blue Jays manager John Schneider joked that the timing of the suspensions may help his team.
“I don’t hate the fact that Clase is unavailable tonight,” he said, “and I hope I Ramírez begins his suspension tomorrow.”
Anderson and Ramírez exchanged several punches near second base in the sixth inning, and the Guardians’ All-Star third baseman landed a right haymaker to the White Sox shortstop’s chin, knocking him onto the infield dirt.
Players and coaches for both teams joined in and there were other flareups during the extended melee. The umpiring crew needed more than 15 minutes to get things under control so the game could be resumed. Chicago won 7-4.
The dustup began innocently with Ramírez sliding headfirst into second with an RBI double. He slid between Anderson’s legs and seemed upset by a hard tag. Ramírez jumped to his feet and the two exchanged words, with Ramírez pointing in Anderson’s face as second base umpire Malachi Moore tried to step between.
Anderson then dropped his glove and challenged Ramírez by raising his hands and assuming a boxer’s stance. The players threw punches with Ramírez connecting with a blind punch that dropped Anderson on his backside and triggered both teams to join in.
Following the game, Ramírez said he had been upset with Anderson for some previous actions.
“He has been disrespecting the game for a while,” Ramirez said through interpreter Agustin Rivero. “It’s not from yesterday. It’s from before. I even had the chance to tell him during the game, ‘Don’t do this stuff. That’s disrespectful. Don’t start tagging people like that,’ because in reality, we’re here trying to find ways to provide for our families.”
When he got to his feet, Anderson continued to try and get at Ramírez.
He was guided off the field only to return moments later and tried to get at Ramírez before he was physically carried into the dugout by teammate Andrew Vaughn, who wrapped his arms around Anderson.
The White Sox and Guardians completed their season series Sunday and won’t face each other again until 2024.