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Piazza Beaned in Head by Clemens

July 9, 2000 GMT

NEW YORK (AP) _ Mike Piazza was hit in the helmet by Roger Clemens’ fastball the first time he came to the plate Saturday night, and forced to leave the second game of the Mets-Yankees split doubleheader.

The beaning came in the top of the second inning at Yankee Stadium. In the bottom half, the Mets’ Glendon Rusch hit Tino Martinez in the backside with his second pitch.

Martinez calmly took his base as plate umpire Doug Eddings warned both teams against further trouble.

There was no immediate word on Piazza’s condition.

Piazza, who had homered in three straight games against Clemens, was sent sprawling by an 0-1 pitch to start the inning. Two trainers and Mets manager Bobby Valentine rushed from the dugout to tend to Piazza, and Clemens walked toward the plate for a closer look.

Piazza stayed on the ground for a minute, was helped up by a trainer and walked to the bench. Several of the Mets moved to the top step of the dugout, and coach John Stearns seemed particularly animated.

Matt Franco entered as a pinch-runner and stayed in the game as the designated hitter.

Piazza, elected to start at catcher for the NL in Tuesday night’s All-Star game, is 7-for-12 lifetime against Clemens with three homers and a double.

Martinez had three hits and drove in three runs at Shea Stadium earlier in the day as the Yankees won 4-2.

After Martinez was hit, Eddings went to the mound to talk to Rusch. Valentine, ejected after one pitch of the opener, waved his arms while arguing with crew chief Tim Welke, but remained in the game. Yankees manager Joe Torre came out to talk with Eddings.