Work in Sports
Astros players involved in fight
Posted: Monday June 12, 2000 12:09 AM
Mieske was cut over his left eye. The fight happened about an hour before the Astros' latest defeat, a 4-1 loss to the San Diego Padres, with several hundred fans already in the stands. Some Astros veterans clearly were unhappy about the fight.
According to witnesses, Meluskey was late for his turn in the batting cage and he jumped in ahead of Mieske. The two exchanged words and Meluskey hit Mieske when the two were outside the cage. Meluskey was hustled away and Mieske was treated on the ground.
"It's something I feel bad about," Meluskey said after the game. "There's nothing I can do about it. I'm going to sit down and talk to him about it. It's between teammates."
Meluskey wouldn't discuss specifics of the fight other than to say: "It was not a cheap shot."
Mieske refused comment, telling reporters: "I don't think it's any of your business."
After winning three straight NL Central titles, the Astros have collapsed this year. Sunday's loss dropped them to 22-40, the worst record in the majors.
"It's a frustrating season to be sure," Meluskey said. "Because of that, it's even worse. It looks like we're rolling over and turning against each other."
Second baseman Craig Biggio was unhappy about the fight.
"To me, it has everything to do with respect," Biggio said, noting that Mieske is in his 11th year in pro ball. "You know, some people have it and some people don't. I'm going to leave it at that. There's no way in the world something like that should happen."
Pitcher Jose Lima agreed, saying he'd never seen anything like it in his 11 years in pro baseball.
"This is the time when we have to stick together as a family," said Lima, who lost his ninth straight decision. "I don't appreciate something like this happening."
Manager Larry Dierker said the fight probably had to do with frustration, "but it doesn't mean it's all right."
Dierker said he'd talk to general manager Gerry Hunsicker about the fight, but didn't have any other comment.
Meluskey, who's hitting .300, leads all NL rookies with seven homers, 33 RBIs, 12 doubles and 19 extra-base hits. Mieske is hitting .184.