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Big League Stew

Nolan Ryan chats with Robin Ventura for first time since punching him in 1993

David Brown
Big League Stew

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(AP)

After 19 long years, the Nolan Ryan-Robin Ventura cold war has thawed. And, like both men have said for years, there appear to be no hard feelings left over from one of the more infamous fights in major league history.

For the first time since their awesome on-field noogie-fest in 1993 at old Arlington Stadium, Ryan and Ventura met Friday near the visitor's clubhouse at Rangers Ballpark. This time, they just talked and shook hands before the Texas Rangers and Chicago White Sox opened the season. Ryan, now the Rangers president instead of their venerable ace, also wished Ventura luck before his first game as a manager. They're best friends forever now!

But back in '93, Nolan whooped Ventura like he had rustled some of his cattle. Check out video of the boys being boys:

Ventura merely charged the mound — the nerve! — after Ryan drilled him in the ribs with a pitch. The Rangers have celebrated Ryan getting the better of Ventura by replaying the one-sided fight before every home game in a music video on the scoreboard. But they're stopping that practice this season. Partly out of respect for Ventura being back in the major leagues, but also because the Rangers are kind of past it now, being two-time AL champions and all.

Ryan has said he never harbored any ill will toward Ventura (and why would he, right?). If the incident bothered Ventura at one time, that time has passed.

Big BLS H/N: Chicago Tribune

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