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Wells tripped on bar stool before cutting self

SAN DIEGO -- David Wells said the accident that put him on
the disabled list was caused when he tripped over a bar stool in
his kitchen.

The Padres left-hander denied reports that the mishap Sunday
night happened while he was roughhousing with a friend, but
admitted the chain of events started when a buddy slapped him on
the back of the neck.

"We do that on the team," Wells said Thursday during a
telephone conference call. "I was at my counter, and I just turned
around and said, 'Knock it off,' took two steps and the bar stool
was right there and I kicked it. Trust me, it didn't feel too good.
When I kicked it, I tripped. I was wearing flip-flops. I lost my
balance and went right over. I did a header over the bar stool.

"I wasn't running, I wasn't playhousing."

Wells, who detailed his hard-living ways in a book last year,
said that after tripping, he knocked a bottle of wine onto the
floor and landed on it and a glass he was holding. He severed a
tendon in his right wrist, requiring surgery, and cut his left
palm.

It was the first time Wells spoke to reporters since the
accident, which came several hours after he lost 4-2 to the Cubs.

"I can't lie. I cut my wrists because I wasn't getting any run
support," Wells joked.

Wells, 2-4 with a 3.78 ERA, was placed on the 15-day disabled
list retroactive to Monday and will miss at least two starts. He
plans to rejoin the team in Colorado next week, although he won't
be eligible to be activated until June 1.

Wells said he was trying to catch his balance when he knocked
the bottle of wine onto the floor. "I fell right on top of it,"
said the 6-foot-3, 248-pounder. "I cut the right arm with the
bottle. I had a glass in my right hand. I don't know why I didn't
throw it. I landed on it, and cut my left hand a little bit. The
left hand is fine. The right is the worst of the cuts."

He said his wrought-iron bar stools are "pretty gnarly,"
weighing 30-to-40 pounds each.

There was plenty of speculation about how Wells got hurt,
because he's been involved in off-field altercations in recent
years.

In January 1997, while back in San Diego for his mother's
funeral, Wells got into a street fight outside a bar and broke his
pitching hand. In 2002, while with the Yankees, he was punched in
the face by a man during an early morning argument in a New York
diner and lost two teeth.

Last year, Wells wrote the book "Perfect I'm Not! Boomer on
Beer, Brawls, Backaches and Baseball."

Wells wrote that he pitched a perfect game with the Yankees in
1998 "with bloodshot eyes, monster breath and a raging,
skull-rattling hangover" after partying until several hours before
game time.

"I'm going to hear a lot things from a lot of people, just
because of who I am and how people perceive me," Wells said. "It
doesn't bother me. I've been through a lot of situations in my
career and life. I couldn't care less what people think and say.

"I don't have any reason to lie," he said. "I'm not trying to
cover things up. It was an honest and ridiculous accident. I
tripped and fell. That's all there is. Nobody feels worse than me.
I can't apologize enough to the team. But an accident is an
accident."

Wells said he'll probably wear a brace on his right wrist when
he returns.

The tendon he cut is the one that's usually removed when a
pitcher undergoes "Tommy John" reconstructive elbow surgery.

"If you cut any tendon, that's the one to cut," Wells said.
"I got lucky there. They just repaired it. They didn't take it
out."

Wells said he's not worried about hitting, saying he stinks at it.

"The best thing is to bunt," he said.