Dodgers president: Miguel Olivo’s ear biting is ‘unforgivable’

Dodgers reliever Brandon League is congratulated by catcher Miguel Olivo in happier times, after a 9-7 victory over the Miami Marlins on May 3.
(Wilfredo Lee / Associated Press)

NEW YORK -- In the wake of Miguel Olivo’s release Thursday, Dodgers President Stan Kasten said the triple-A catcher’s alleged attack on Alex Guerrero was “unimaginable, inconceivable and, frankly, unforgivable.”

In an in-game altercation Tuesday between the Albuquerque teammates, Olivo bit off the upper part of Guerrero’s ear, which had to be reattached by plastic surgeons. Guerrero remains hospitalized in Salt Lake City, Kasten said.

Asked if Guerrero was at all at fault for provoking Olivo, Kasten exploded.


“Fault?” Kasten said. “It’s not a question of fault. As I said, the action of removing a part of someone’s ear was unforgivable. Fault is not an issue here.”

Olivo was “distraught” about the incident, according to Kasten.

Kasten didn’t speak to Olivo and said he didn’t know if Olivo apologized.

Olivo is on release waivers, which expire Saturday. Kasten wouldn’t say if the Dodgers would have to pay the remainder of Olivo’s salary if no other team picks him up.

As for Guerrero, Kasten said, “I can tell you he feels awful, both about the incident and the fact he was doing so well. He was really feeling he had finally turned the corner. “

Kasten said the Dodgers don’t have a timetable for when Guerrero might return.

“We won’t know his longer-term timetable until Sunday,” Kasten said. “They want to see first how well the graft takes. Then we’ll be able to predict how much longer he’ll be out.”

The surgical procedure was complicated, in part because of how much of Guerrero’s ear was bitten off.

“It was the whole upper part of the ear,” Kasten said. “This is plastic surgery to reattach a portion of the ear and to regrow skin over it. It’s quite complicated.”

Guerrero will remain in Salt Lake City for a few more days, after which he is expected to travel to Los Angeles to start the next phase of his recovery.