MLB suspends Cubs' Bradley 2 games

Updated: April 18, 2009, 9:22 PM ET
ESPN.com news services

Cubs outfielder Milton Bradley has been suspended two games and fined an undisclosed amount by Major League Baseball for his actions after a strike-three call during a 7-4 loss Thursday to the visiting Cardinals.

Bradley, whose right groin injury has limited him to the one pinch-hitting appearance since Sunday, will continue to be eligible to play until an appeal is heard and processed.

[+] EnlargeMilton Bradley
AP Photo/Charles Rex ArbogastMilton Bradley argues with home plate umpire Larry Vanover after being called out on strikes Thursday against the Cardinals.

He was out of the starting lineup against the Cardinals again Saturday, a game the Cubs won 7-5 thanks to Aramis Ramirez's game-winning, two-run home run in the 11th inning, but Bradley did ground out in a pinch-hit appearance in the ninth.

Cubs manager Lou Piniella was asked during a pregame interview why Bradley wouldn't take the suspension now considering his groin strain.

"That's a good question, but Milton believes that a two-day suspension for what occurred isn't right," Piniella said. "We support Milton in his decision to appeal it."

Bradley, who was ejected during the bottom of the sixth inning, got in umpire Larry Vanover's face and made contact with him. Bradley was caught looking with the bases loaded.

Bradley, suspended twice previously in 2004, had been on his best behavior since joining the Cubs on a three-year, $30 million deal and had downplayed his reputation as a hothead. He has one hit in 18 at-bats this season.

Though television replays made it appear Cardinals starter Adam Wainwright received a generous call, he said the pitch "was too close to take."

On Friday, Bradley refused to talk about the incident, while Piniella backed his player, saying "it didn't look like a good pitch to me."

Cardinals manager Tony La Russa countered Piniella's take.

"I don't know how the Cubs get away with making the comments they make about umpires," he said.

Information from The Associated Press and Bruce Levine of ESPN 1000 radio in Chicago was used in this report.

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