Bueno's Sue Rangers - Three Players and Team

Attorneys for the fan involved in last year's chair-throwing incident at the Oakland-Texas game filed a lawsuit Thursday seeking damages from the Rangers and three of their players.

The lawsuit against the Rangers and players Frank Francisco, Doug Brocail and Carlos Almanzar was filed by Jennifer Bueno, who suffered a broken nose from a chair hurled into the stands by Francisco last Sept. 13 in Oakland.

Francisco was suspended by the commissioner's office for the rest of the 2004 season -- 16 games.

The pitcher also faces an assault charge. The case is scheduled to be heard by a judge Thursday, but the pitcher isn't required to attend because the charge is a misdemeanor. Francisco has pleaded not guilty; if convicted, he could face a year in county jail and three years' probation.

Bueno is expected to appear at Thursday's news conference with her husband, Craig, who also attended the game with her the night of the incident.

During Texas' 7-6, 10-inning loss to the A's, Francisco threw a chair into the right-field box seats and hit two spectators in the head. At the time, Craig Bueno acknowledged that, before the fracas, he was part of some "bantering" with the Rangers that included such taunts as "Who is going to take the loss?" and "When are you going to lose?" but "no swear words."

It's part of going to the baseball game," said Jennifer Bueno, a homemaker who cares for the couple's three teenage sons. "I don't think [Craig] did anything wrong."

Craig Bueno said that when "a sea of blue" Rangers led by reliever Doug Brocail emerged from the bullpen and approached their seats, he "took a defensive position" by standing in front of his wife to shield her, but ducked when he saw the chair winging his way. Jennifer Bueno said she did not remember being struck, but that she was "fearful for my life" when the confrontation turned ugly.

She said last September "it would be a little while" before she attends A's games again.

Francisco's attorney, Rick Minkoff, gave a dramatically different account of what happened that night. He said Francisco rushed out of the bullpen to defend his teammates, and was pushed up against a fence in the crush of fans and players.

"He was grabbed, hard and forcefully, on his left wrist. He didn't see who did it. Fortunately, it's not his pitching hand, and he was able to get free," Minkoff said outside court.

The Athletics and the Rangers also disagreed over who was to blame for the altercation.

Francisco is scheduled to have ligament replacement surgery in his right elbow Friday. He is expected to miss the entire season.

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.