It wasn't so much the three-game suspension he received Thursday that infuriated Tony Phillips. It was that Boston Red Sox catcher Mike Macfarlane, with whom Phillips tangled during a June 8 altercation in Fenway Park, received no punishment from American League President Gene A. Budig.
"How can you get in a fight and one guy gets nothing and the other guy gets this?" fumed Phillips, who can play while he appeals the action. "One person can't start a fight."
Phillips had questioned a strike call in the seventh inning of a 10-8 victory over Boston, then exchanged words with Macfarlane, who, according to Phillips, told him to "get back in the batter's box."
The two went jaw-to-jaw, then wrestled each other to the ground as both benches and bullpens emptied. No punches were thrown, but after order was restored, Phillips got into a shoving match with Boston batting instructor Jim Rice, inciting both benches to clear again.
Phillips, who was also fined $1,500 for his part in the incident, said if Macfarlane received a three-day suspension, "this would be fine with me."
Said teammate Chili Davis: "If they suspend Tony they should suspend Macfarlane, because Tony didn't say anything [to start that]. Macfarlane popped his face in there, and as far as I'm concerned, he instigated it."
The suspension was to have begun with Thursday night's game against the Chicago White Sox, but Phillips remained in the lineup pending results of a hearing.
That could take place during the Angels' next trip to New York Aug. 29, or Phillips said he might try to resolve the matter during the All-Star break July 10-12.
"I can't wait to talk to [Budig]," said Phillips, who had never been suspended in his 12 previous seasons. "I want to know the motivation for me getting three days and Macfarlane getting nothing."
Pitcher Brian Anderson rejoined the Angels Thursday after a two-week rehabilitation stint at Class-A Lake Elsinore, which included a seven-hour bus ride to San Jose this week.
"It was actually real fun, I didn't mind at all," said Anderson, who is expected to pitch Monday against Kansas City. "We watched three movies, it was fine."
Anderson, who hasn't pitched for the Angels since suffering a strained left biceps May 5, said there was no friction between him and the handful of former Angel replacement players at Lake Elsinore.
"I didn't really know who they were, so there weren't any problems," Anderson said.
Jim Edmonds' first-inning single Thursday night extended his hitting streak to 12, which equaled a season-best previously accomplished by Chili Davis . . . Davis' double Wednesday night against Minnesota was his 742nd hit as an Angel, tying him with Bob Boone for 10th on the team's all-time list.