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Pitcher warned by KBO over inappropriate gestures vs. former club

All Headlines 15:29 March 27, 2018

By Yoo Jee-ho

SEOUL, March 27 (Yonhap) -- Nexen Heroes right-hander Esmil Rogers received a warning from the Korea Baseball Organization (KBO) on Tuesday over inappropriate actions against his former team last weekend.

The KBO's measure came one day after the Heroes themselves warned the Dominican pitcher, who beat the Hanwha Eagles on Saturday at Gocheok Sky Dome in Seoul.

In this photo provided by the Nexen Heroes baseball club, Esmil Rogers of the Heroes (L) taps Choi Jae-hoon of the Hanwha Eagles on the helmet after Choi was thrown out at home during the second inning of the teams' Korea Baseball Organization regular season game at Gocheok Sky Dome in Seoul on March 24, 2018. (Yonhap)

The following day, the Eagles lodged a complaint with the Heroes over Rogers' antics during Saturday's game.

After Hanwha's Choi Jae-hoon was thrown out at home to end the second inning, Rogers crossed paths with Choi near home plate and tapped the back of Choi's head with his glove on his way to the dugout.

Choi was trying to score from third on a fly ball off the bat of Lee Yong-kyu. Rogers also hit Lee on the helmet.

Rogers, who is known as a flamboyant player, later explained, "I was just playing around with them."

Then in the fifth inning, Rogers picked off Yang Sung-woo at first base and pointed two fingers at his own eyes, apparently telling Yang, "I have my eyes on you."

In warning Rogers, the KBO cited Rule 3.09 in the Official Baseball Rules, which says, "Players of opposing teams shall not fraternize at any time while in uniform."

Separately, the KBO's own regulations prevent players from engaging in actions that may offend their opponents, spectators or umpires during games.

The KBO also issued a warning to the umpire crew of that game for their failure to take proper action in response to Rogers' behavior early in the game.

Rogers first pitched for the Eagles from August to September in 2015 as a midseason acquisition. The Eagles brought him back for the 2016 season, but he only pitched from May to June before elbow issues cut his season short.

In this photo provided by the Nexen Heroes baseball club, Esmil Rogers of the Heroes points at his own eyes after picking off Yang Sung-woo of the Hanwha Eagles in the fifth inning of the teams' Korea Baseball Organization regular season game at Gocheok Sky Dome in Seoul on March 24, 2018. (Yonhap)

jeeho@yna.co.kr
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