Tuesday, March 10, 1998
Murakami suspends starter Bergman
The Rainbows' pitching rotationBy Paul Arnett
is unsettled as they
prepare to play at Rice
Starting University of Hawaii pitcher Dusty Bergman was suspended yesterday for one week by head coach Les Murakami for breaking team rules.
Murakami said after yesterday's practice that Bergman would rejoin the team when the Rainbows return from this week's road trip to Rice University in Houston.
Bergman was pulled in the first inning of last Saturday's lopsided 13-1 loss to San Diego State. The sophomore from Carson City, Nev., faced five batters and failed to get anyone out.
After coming off the field, he damaged a water fountain, forcing the players to drink out of a jug during Sunday's series finale.
"That was part of it," Murakami said of why Bergman was suspended for three games. "And I'm not automatically going to start him in our next series at home with Fresno State."
In seven starts, Bergman is 3-3 for the season with an ERA of 6.55. But in his last two starts - both in the Western Athletic Conference - Bergman is 0-2 with an ERA of 108.00. He told Murakami last week that his arm was hurting.
"But then he told us before the last game that he was OK," Murakami said. "That's the only reason we started him. He told us it hurts sometimes, but not when he throws. So we'll see how he feels when we get back."
Murakami isn't sure who will replace Bergman in the rotation. He said yesterday that Troy Yoshimasu (2-0, 4.55 ERA) will pitch in the Friday opener with the Owls, who advanced to the College World Series last year.
Freshman sensation Patrick McNair (4-0, 1.89) will pitch either Saturday or Sunday, depending on what happens in the first game. Randon Ho's (3-3, 4.81) status also remains uncertain.
"I'm not sure he's tough enough mentally to be a starter for us," Murakami said. "He talks a good game. He was the bully when he was in high school.
"Now, he's facing some teams, who have Charlie Atlas. The bully's getting the sand thrown in his face and he's finding out he's not so tough. I need guys with heart, who can throw strikes."
Reliever Ian Jones could get a start this weekend. Murakami said he might take a look at Jamie Aloy, who pitched last year. The veteran head coach has been hesitant to use Aloy because he has been so productive at the plate and in the field.
Rainbow Men Baseball Schedule