ARLINGTON, Texas (AP) — The Texas Rangers said Monday they had spoken with two teammates who were with Tanner Scheppers and have a “full understanding” of what happened when the reliever was involved in a physical altercation in Cleveland.
Scheppers said after the team’s statement that he didn’t initially say All-Star closer Joe Nathan and catcher A.J. Pierzynksi were with him early Friday “because I felt like it wasn’t a big deal, and I didn’t want to involve them.”
Scheppers said he was “sucker-punched by several young males” while out to dinner a few blocks from the team hotel after getting to Cleveland on Thursday night.
When asked about his teammates, Scheppers said neither Nathan or Pierzynski were hit.
“They were there with me, so they know what happened,” Scheppers said. “They mostly just picked me up off the floor.”
Cleveland Police said Scheppers was involved in a physical altercation at 2:30 a.m. Friday. The statement said Scheppers “refused to provide information and refused to make a police report.”
The Rangers thanked Cleveland police and said they consider the incident closed.
Scheppers, who pitched a scoreless inning against the Indians on Sunday, also thanked Cleveland police, who he said took him back to the hotel. He added that he’ll be “a little more careful” in the future.
A Cleveland-based entertainment website, Scene, cited unnamed witness in a report Sunday that Scheppers verbally instigated the incident.
“I really don’t have any further information. I really have gone over that, I’ve turned that page,” Scheppers said Monday, his left eye still bruised. “Unfortunately, an incident happened.”