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Hawk Harrelson apologizes to umpire Mark Wegner

White Sox broadcaster Ken Harrelshas come under fire for his harsh criticism umpire Mark Wegner. | Nam Y. Huh~AP

White Sox broadcaster Ken Harrelson has come under fire for his harsh criticism of umpire Mark Wegner. | Nam Y. Huh~AP

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TODAY

Mariners
at Sox

The facts: 1:10 p.m., CSN, 670-AM, 97.5-FM.

The pitchers: Kevin Millwood (3-4, 3.56 ERA) vs. Chris Sale (6-2, 2.34).

Updated: July 7, 2012 8:11AM



White Sox TV broadcaster Ken Harrelson called umpire Mark Wegner on Saturday to apologize for his on-air criticism during the game Wednesday between the Sox and Tampa Bay Rays.

‘‘No one told me to do it,’’ Harrelson said. ‘‘I felt bad after I sat down and thought about it, so I called him and left him a message.’’

Harrelson’s angry comments toward the umpire came after Wegner ejected Sox starter

Jose Quintana for throwing behind Ben Zobrist . Baseball commissioner Bud Selig and Sox chairman Jerry Reinsdorf talked to Harrelson.

Harrelson, who has been a Sox broadcaster for 28 seasons, said Friday he would “do everything in my power to not let it happen again.”

Fisk wondered, too

Carlton Fisk had the same questions about his former teammate, Robin Ventura, becoming a manager that many did.

‘‘I questioned it early,’’ the Hall of Fame catcher said Saturday at U.S. Cellular Field. ‘‘There’s not a nicer guy on the face of the earth, or at least in this game. There was no question he knows the game of baseball. And with his personality, I don’t think he’d have a problem with 99.99 percent of the players.

‘‘The only thing that might be in question is his in-game management. And when guys play for you, that’s easy. You don’t have to guess what a guy is going to do for you. If a guy gives you what his talent it, you can manage.’’

Fisk played with Ventura from 1989 to ’93. Replicas of his statue were handed out to fans at the game.

Left-handed
compliment

Reliever Matt Thornton, who set a franchise record for appearances with his 425th on Friday, credits ‘‘behind-the-scenes’’ teammates such as trainer Herm Schneider and strength coach Allen Thomas for his longevity.

“The stuff I do with [Schneider and Thomas], that’s the biggest thing, just staying healthy,’’ he said. ‘‘Obviously, I’ve done my job for the most part to be able to stay in one place for seven seasons now.

‘‘A lot of times relievers bounce around, but I’ve enjoyed my time in Chicago, and I love it here. I hope we get another 400.’’

The left-hander’s value has made him a routine topic of trade rumors.

‘‘I think it’s been three years now, and even this year,’’ he said, smiling. ‘‘I guess Kenny and Jerry like me.’’

Morel improving

Third baseman Brent Morel (strained back) is 5-for-12 in three games on his rehab assignment for Class AAA Charlotte. He was 2-for-5 with a run scored Friday.

Morel is eligible to return, but Ventura said assuring his health comes first.

‘‘You don’t want to lose him for another 15 games,’’ he said.

Morel also figures to be back at third when he returns.

‘‘I don’t expect him to lose [his job] because he got hurt,’’ Ventura said.



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