When Ozzie’s involved, you had to know the action on the periphery of the Pierzynski/Barrett bust-up would be more entertaining than the fight itself.  From the Chicago Tribune’s Paul Sullivan and Dave Van Dyck.

After a long-distance war of words, Cubs reliever Ryan Dempster and White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen apologized to each other, but neither was happy about how the misunderstanding occurred.

Dempster was visibly upset Monday night after reading Guillen’s afternoon criticism of comments attributed to Dempster during a morning appearance on WSCR-AM 670, although his anger was directed at WSCR morning host Mike North, not Guillen.

He claimed North “misquoted” him several times and left Guillen a phone message during Monday night’s Sox game against Oakland. Guillen replied with a message of his own.

“I appreciate he did call me to clear the air,” Guillen said. “It takes a big man to do that. It was my mistake that the information wasn’t what I thought. So, I apologize to Ryan.”

Why did Dempster believe it was North who relayed the quotes to Guillen?”I don’t know, he probably interviewed A.J. [Pierzynski],” Dempster said. “Because I know A.J. goes on with him. Stir the pot, man. Create the controversy. Keep it going for a month from now when we play ’em.

The three statements Dempster said were attributed to him inaccurately were that Guillen’s kids were on the field during Saturday’s brawl, that Sox coach Joey Cora bit Jacque Jones and that he’d criticized Cora for taking part in the fight.

Needless to say Guillen had plenty to say about those supposed comments before being ejected in Monday’s game against Oakland.

“Somebody told me [Dempster] said Joey Cora bit Jacque Jones on the foot,” Guillen said. “Wow, when you’re in the ballgame, you have shoes on. If Joey Cora is going to bite somebody, I hope he’s not dumb enough to try and get his feet.

“If you’re going to bite him, bite him in his cheek, in the ribs or someplace else, in the stomach. But if you pick the foot, that’s the wrong place to bite somebody.”

And what about Ozzie Jr., Oney and Ozney?

“Well, if my kids were on the field, [Dempster] was going to get his butt kicked. What’s Ozzie [Jr.] going to do? Eat somebody? My other one is 20 pounds and the other one is only 14 [years old]. Ryan is stupid to make those comments. One is a baby, one is too little, another one [Ozzie Jr.], the only thing he can do is eat somebody or drink somebody.”

And what about coaches being involved in fights?

“Good thing he’s thought about it, because he keeps pitching like [he is], he might be coaching pretty soon,” Guillen said. “It’s a stupid comment.”

Dempster has been paid for a regular gig on North’s morning show for the last two seasons but said he would no longer be a contributor after Friday’s show

“Wonderful, beautiful guy Mike North, on the morning show, misquoted me three times,” he said. “And they wonder why people don’t do interviews.”