Baseball: Offerman banned for life from Dominican winter league
By DIONISIO SOLDEVILA
Associated Press Writer
SANTO DOMINGO, Dominican Republic — Jose Offerman was banned for life by the Dominican winter league for throwing a punch at an umpire during an argument on the baseball field.
The former All-Star, manager of the Licey Tigers, appeared to hit first base umpire Daniel Rayburn in the face or neck with a fist during Saturday's playoff game against the Cibao Giants. Rayburn fell to the ground.
The Dominican league's president, Leonardo Matos Berrido, announced the ban Monday. He said the decision against Offerman was made shortly after the attack.
Fernando Ravelo, the general manager of the Tigers, said the club will try to appeal the ban against Offerman, who had a contract with the club for next season.
"We know that he is a young man who committed a serious error, but we think that a pardon" can be granted by the winter league, Revolo told The Associated Press.
Offerman was detained by stadium security and taken to a police station to wait until the end of the game while it was determined whether Rayburn would seek charges.
The Giants were winning 6-0 in the third inning of the final game of the winter league semifinal playoff series when plate umpire Jason Bradley ejected catcher Ronny Paulino for arguing balls and strikes. Offerman came onto the field to talk to Bradley, but ended up arguing with Rayburn.
It was the latest outburst by Offerman, an All-Star infielder with the Los Angeles Dodgers in 1995 and Boston Red Sox in 1999.
On Aug. 14, 2007, he was batting for the Long Island Ducks against the Bridgeport Bluefish in an independent minor league game when pitcher Matt Beech hit him with a fastball. Offerman charged the mound with his bat and swung at least twice, striking Beech and Bluefish catcher John Nathans.
In February 2009, Nathans sued Offerman in U.S. District Court in Bridgeport, Conn., seeking $4.8 million in damages. Nathans said the attack left him with permanent, career-ending injuries.
Offerman last played in the big leagues in 2005 with the New York Mets. He played 15 seasons in the majors, also spending time with Kansas City, Seattle, Minnesota and Philadelphia.