TORONTO -- Oakland Athletics catcher Jason Kendall ripped Major League Baseball after dropping his appeal of his four-game suspension on Tuesday.
Kendall was suspended and fined for charging Los Angeles Angels pitcher John Lackey in a game on May 2.
"Major League Baseball has turned into a badminton league. They told me I didn't have any shot of getting my suspension knocked out," Kendall said.
Kendall said his agent, general manager Billy Beane and the players union told him he probably wouldn't have his suspension reduced.
"The fact that they won't knock anything off is embarrassing to the game because the game has changed. Now you can't really defend yourself. I understand I have to be suspended, but it's not like I went out and picked a fight. Nothing would have happened if he wouldn't have said anything to me, if he wouldn't have taken three steps hard at me," Kendall said.
Lackey threw a pitch to Kendall that started out high and inside, then sharply broke back toward the plate in the sixth inning of Oakland's 10-3 win. Kendall backed out of the batter's box, then suddenly charged the mound after Lackey said something about his elbow pad.
Kendall charged the mound and wrestled Lackey to the ground, emptying both dugouts and bullpens.
"I get called out by Lackey. He calls me out and disrespects me and I'm supposed to sit here and have him yell at me? So basically what Major League Baseball is saying is that any big league pitcher out there can yell at somebody and get fined $2,000. That's what the fine was," Kendall said.
MLB's latest disciplinary action against Kendall comes after he received a four-game suspension in August 2004 while with Pittsburgh for a similar scuffle when he charged the mound in a game against Colorado after being hit by now-teammate Joe Kennedy. The pitcher received a five-game suspension for the incident.
"I think the big thing was this was my fourth time, and all four of the fights I've been into has been about sticking up for myself or sticking up for my pitcher. I guess they don't look at that," Kendall said. "People that are making decisions have never been in a situation like that. They wait for situations like this to happen so they can have this big power. And that's what they did. They have the power right now."
The 31-year-old Kendall, who played 150 games last year in his first season with the A's, entered Friday's game batting .244 with no home runs and seven RBI.
With Kendall dropping the appeal, Oakland was able to call up catcher Jeremy Brown from Triple-A Sacramento without having to drop somebody from its 40-man roster. Oakland manager Ken Macha said Brown wasn't likely to play. Milton Bradley is expected to take Brown's place on the 25-man roster once he's activated from the DL this week.