MLB News and Notes June - 22

MLB News and Notes June - 22

Notes from Thursday's games
June 21, 2007

LOS ANGELES: RHP Brad Penny will get an extra day of rest before his next start and will pitch Monday at Arizona as the Dodgers open a three-game set against their division rivals. ``It's good to get him six days right now,'' manager Grady Little said. LHP Hong-Chih Kuo, who worked just 1 2-3 innings against Toronto on Wednesday, will start in Penny's place at Tampa Bay on Sunday. ... Little said RHP Chin-hui Tsao (strained shoulder) will likely make at least two rehab appearances in the minor leagues before rejoining the Dodgers. ... INF James Loney, who injured his knee Sunday, was available to play Thursday after missing the past two games. ... LHP Clayton Kershaw has been selected to play for the American team and INF Chin-Lung Hu will play for the World team at the All-Star Futures game.

TORONTO: OF Matt Stairs, who has 136 at_bats this season, hit his 10th home run Wednesday. Stairs hit 13 home runs in 117 at_bats last season while playing for Detroit, Kansas City, and Texas. ``He hasn't lost anything,'' manager John Gibbons said. ``He's still got a lightning-quick bat.'' ... Vernon Wells, who is two hits away from 1,000 for his career, entered play Thursday stuck in an 0-for-12 slump. ... DH Frank Thomas had six total bases in the second inning of Wednesday's game, doubling to start the frame and adding a grand slam. The last Blue Jay to accumulate six total bases in one inning was Carlos Delgado, who did it July 27, 2003, against Baltimore, also with a double and a homer.


CHICAGO: 3B Mark DeRosa was back in the lineup after leaving Wednesday night's game due to blurred vision in his left eye from a migraine. ``I've had migraine-type headaches, but nothing like that where the vision is so blurry,'' DeRosa said. ``At first I thought I had heat exhaustion but I played here for two years and never had anything like that. I tried to focus on the scoreboard but it wouldn't come together so I took myself out. I went into the clubhouse and had a nasty headache for four or five innings.'' ... C Rob Bowen was 1-for-3 with an RBI single a day after he was acquired from the San Diego Padres. Bowen relishes the opportunity to be an everyday player after being a backup in parts of four major league seasons with the Twins and Padres. ``This is a good advance for my career,'' Bowen said. ... With 3B Aramis Ramirez set to come off the DL on Friday, the Cubs must create a roster spot. Manager Lou Piniella indicated they would drop to 11 pitchers.

TEXAS: The Rangers are 9-6 in interleague play, one victory shy of the most they've had in one season against the National League. They play a three-game series this weekend at home against the Houston Astros. ... RHP Vicente Padilla has given up 42 hits over 16 2-3 innings his last four starts. ... Former OF Rusty Greer will be the newest inductee into the Texas Rangers Baseball Hall of Fame. Greer had a career .305 batting average for the Rangers from 1994-2003. The hard-playing outfielder will be inducted Aug. 11 as the 10th member, joining Nolan Ryan, Jim Sundberg, Buddy Bell, among others. Greer is the first inductee from the 1996 team that won the franchise's first AL West title.


NEW YORK: RHP Roger Clemens was direct in his evaluation of his performance. ``We lost,'' he said. ``You want to win ballgames. I expect to win every time I pitch.'' ... Clemens denied that running the bases in the fifth inning took its toll on him. ``I don't think so,'' he said. ``I gave us a chance for a big inning.'' ... The hit was his first hit as a Yankee since June 20, 2002, at Coors Field. ... SS Derek Jeter has a 15-game hitting streak. He is hitting .444 at Coors Field. ... OF Johnny Damon made his first start of the series, missing the first two games with an abdominal strain.

COLORADO: The Rockies have homered in a season-high eight straight games. ... The series sweep was the first for the Rockies at home and second overall this season. ... The series drew 145,128, a mere 1,402 short of the club's record of 146,530 for a three-game series at Coors Field. The mark was set June 18-20, 2002 against the Yankees. ... OF Willy Taveras got his major league-leading 22nd bunt hit. ... Closer LHP Brian Fuentes earned his 20th save of the year and has three consecutive seasons of 20 or more saves. ... Colorado is four games over .500 for the first time this season.


BALTIMORE: SS Miguel Tejada, who was hit on the left wrist by a pitch Wednesday night, appeared in Thursday's 6-3 win at San Diego just long enough to extend his streak of consecutive games played to 1,152, the fifth-longest in big league history. Tejada hit a dribbler in the first inning that forced Brian Roberts at second. Chris Gomez then pinch-ran for Tejada and stayed in the game at shortstop. Interim manager Dave Trembley said Tejada told him he wanted to play, but that he didn't feel comfortable at the plate. Trembley said he had to ``walk a fine line between doing what's right for the team and what's right for Tejada, out of respect. Today, I took him out of the game for the team, but I allowed him to have that at-bat out of respect for him.''

SAN DIEGO: Padres farmhand Craig Stansberry was named to the World Team roster for the All-Star Futures game. An infielder for Triple-A Portland, Stansberry was born in Dammam, Saudi Arabia. He's batting .312 with seven homers and 46 RBIs for the Beavers. ... Manager Bud Black said there was no shame in losing two straight to the Orioles, who are last in the AL East. ``We ran into two of the best pitchers in the American League the last two nights,'' Black said. The Padres were beaten by Jeremy Guthrie and Erik Bedard.

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Re: MLB News and Notes June - 22

Baseball Today - June 22
By Associated Press

SCOREBOARD

Friday, June 22

N.Y. Yankees at San Francisco (10:15 p.m. EDT). Kei Igawa makes his return for the Yankees, squaring off against Matt Cain.

STARS

Thursday

-Felix Hernandez, Mariners, allowed six hits in eight scoreless innings to lead Seattle to a 3-0 win over Pittsburgh.

-Russell Martin, Dodgers, hit a bases-loaded double in the eighth inning, sparking a six-run rally, in an 8-4 win over Toronto.

EKED OUT

Pinch-hitters Kenny Lofton and Frank Catalanotto singled off the gloves of diving Cubs outfielders in the bottom of the ninth inning, producing the winning run in the Texas Rangers' 6-5 victory over Chicago on Thursday. Catalanotto hit a one-out liner down the right-field line that Angel Pagan nearly caught, sending Lofton home with the winning run.

BLOWN CHANCE

Roger Clemens couldn't hold on for his 350th win and the Colorado Rockies completed a three-game sweep of the New York Yankees with a 4-3 victory Thursday. Matt Holliday's RBI single with one out in the fifth broke a 2-2 tie. Clemens (1-2) was trying to become the first major leaguer to win 350 games since Warren Spahn did it for Milwaukee on Sept. 29, 1963, when Yankees manager Joe Torre was the Braves' catcher and Clemens had just celebrated his first birthday.

BLANKED

The hapless Pirates were shut out for the eighth time this season, 3-0, by the Mariners on Thursday night, the most in the major leagues. They haven't scored since Jason Bay singled in a run in the seventh inning of Tuesday night's 5-3 victory over Seattle, a span of 20 innings.

STREAKS

Ichiro Suzuki had two more hits for the Mariners in a 3-0 win over the Pirates Thursday night to extend his hitting streak to 16 games, the longest current one in the majors. He has at least one hit in 41 of his last 43 games.

SPEAKING

''I don't want to see them again, how's that?'' - Yankees Manager Joe Torre after the Rockies denied Roger Clemens his 350th win and completed a three-game sweep of the Yankees with a 4-3 victory on Thursday.

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Re: MLB News and Notes June - 22

Felix Hernandez and Mariners Blank Pirates, 3-0
Friday, June 22nd, 2007

The Seattle Mariners can't complain about their pitching this week.

Felix Hernandez, who had been 0-2 with a 6.85 ERA in his four starts since coming off the disabled list, struck out nine batters over eight innings and the Mariners blanked the Pittsburgh Pirates for a second consecutive night, this time by a 3-0 count, to conclude a three-game series at Safeco Field Thursday night.

On Wednesday, Jeff Weaver threw a four-hit shutout in a 7-0 final.. The 21-year-old Hernandez (4-4) followed up that effort with a gem of his own as he scattered six hits and walked one to win for the first time since May 25.

J.J. Putz allowed a single to Jason Bay to start the ninth, but struck out Ryan Doumit and then induced Xavier Nady to ground into the game-ending double play to notch his 20th save. This is the first time the Mariners have posted back-to-back shutouts since June 11-12, 2004 against Montreal.

Seattle paid -235 on the moneyline (meaning a winning wager of $235 would net a $100 profit).

Ichiro Suzuki extended his hitting streak to 16 games and had an RBI single during a three-run fifth inning. Jose Lopez added a two-run double as the Mariners won the final two contests of the series after losing six in a row.

John Van Benschoten (0-2) was touched for six hits and three runs over five frames, as the Pirates lost for the fifth time in their last six road contests. The Pirates have been blanked a major league-high eight times this season. They haven't scored in their last 20 innings.

In other interleague action on Thursday night:

Texas 6, Chicago Cubs 5: Frank Catalanotto's base hit in the bottom of the ninth pushed the host Rangers to victory as +115 underdogs. Eric Gagne (2-0) held the Cubs off the board in the ninth to earn the victory.

Colorado 4, New York Yankees 3: Troy Tulowitzki had three hits including a home run, as the Rockies completed a sweep of the Yankees at Coors Field. Garrett Atkins hit a homer and finished with two RBIs while Todd Helton finished 2-for-4 for the red-hot Rockies, who have won seven of their last eight games. Colorado starter Rodrigo Lopez (4-0) gave up two runs on seven hits in 5.2 innings for the victory while Brian Fuentes notched his 20th save of the season. New York starter Roger Clemens (1-2), who was aiming for the 350th win of his career, lasted just 4.1 frames, allowing four runs on seven hits. The Rockies were +145 underdogs.

Baltimore 6, San Diego 3: Alberto Castillo homered and knocked in a pair of runs to lead the Orioles to a road win that paid +150. However, Baltimore may have lost two of its best players as shortstop Miguel Tejada and pitcher Erik Bedard left with injuries.

Los Angeles Dodgers 8, Toronto 4: Russell Martin stroked a go-ahead two-run double to spark a six-run eighth inning, as the Dodgers won two of three in Toronto. Jeff Kent hit a two-run homer for Los Angeles, which paid +139 en route to its sixth win in nine games.

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Re: MLB News and Notes June - 22

Tejada reportedly has broken wrist
MLB.com

SAN DIEGO -- The tests appear to be in, and the results appear to be dire. ESPN.com reported late Thursday night that Miguel Tejada has suffered a fractured left wrist, an injury that will likely end his consecutive games streak. Tejada, who has played in 1,152 consecutive games, could be out for two months or more.

Tejada was hit by a pitch late in Wednesday's game, and initial X-rays didn't show any broken bones. There was enough concern, however, to send him to the hospital for further testing. Tejada and interim manager Dave Trembley both denied any knowledge of the test results Thursday after Baltimore's 6-3 win over San Diego.

Earlier in the day, executive Jim Duquette explained the team's difficulty in diagnosing the injury.

"He had an old injury in there, so they couldn't tell if it was old or new," said Duquette, Baltimore's vice president of baseball operations. "We need to talk to the radiologist and try to get a sense for how he's feeling."

Despite the uncertainty, Tejada started Thursday's game and was removed after his first at-bat. The four-time All-Star dropped down a feeble bunt in the first inning and immediately left the game for a pinch-runner. Tejada has played in every game since June of the 2000 season, and Trembley wanted to give him the benefit of the doubt.

"I believe you walk a fine line between what's right for your team and what's right for Miguel Tejada -- out of respect, because I believe he's earned that," Trembley said. "Today, I took him out of the game for the team, but I allowed him to have that at-bat out of respect for him. We'll see what we have to do tomorrow, keeping both things in mind."

Tejada, a former American League Most Valuable Player, was working on the fifth-longest consecutive games streak of all time. He had already passed the streaks of two Hall of Famers -- Joe Sewell and Billy Williams -- earlier this season and was 55 games away from tying 10-time All-Star Steve Garvey for the fourth-longest streak.

"The swelling's gone down," said Tejada after Thursday's game. "Before the game, I was feeling a little bit nervous. ... I'm feeling much better now. My hand is much better now."

Trembley and Baltimore's training staff had to talk him into leaving Wednesday night's game early -- and it took a big lead to convince him it was a good idea. On Thursday, Tejada went along with the plan to put him in the game temporarily and lift him, but mostly because he didn't feel comfortable swinging the bat.

"It's sore. It's definitely sore," Duquette said early in the day. "Until he really starts to swing the bat, I don't think you can get a sense for if he can do that. ... He really is tough. For most guys, it wouldn't even be a question, but he was saying, 'I'm playing tomorrow. I'm playing tomorrow.' He didn't care what the results were -- he was playing."

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Re: MLB News and Notes June - 22

White Sox reinstate Erstad from DL
June 22nd, 2007

Chicago, IL (Sports Network) - The Chicago White Sox reinstated outfielder Darin Erstad from the 15-day disabled list on Friday.

The 32-year-old Erstad has been out since suffering a sprained left ankle against Toronto May 31st.

Erstad is hitting .264 with two homers and 21 RBI in 47 games this season, his first with the White Sox

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Re: MLB News and Notes June - 22

Detroit deals Maroth to St. Louis
FOXSports.com

Seeking to bolster their rotation, the Cardinals have acquired left-handed pitcher Mike Maroth from the Tigers, FOXSports.com has learned.

The trade is the Tigers' second in three days as they prepare for the returns of left-handers Kenny Rogers and Nate Robertson from the disabled list. On Wednesday, Detroit sent left-hander Wil Ledezma to the Braves for left-hander Macay McBride, in part because McBride can be sent to the minors without restriction while Ledezma would need to clear waivers before getting demoted.

The Cardinals have also been actively dealing this week. Maroth becomes the second pitcher St. Louis has added, after they signed right-hander Tomo Ohka to a minor-league contract on Tuesday.

The Cardinals' beat-up rotation, which boasts an NL-worst 5.63 ERA, features three former relievers starting for the first time in the big leagues along with two others, Anthony Reyes and Kip Wells, who are a combined 2-19. Braden Looper, a fourth former reliever, went on the 15-day disabled list on Monday with a shoulder strain.

Ace Chris Carpenter is rehabbing from surgery in May to remove bone spurs from his elbow and Mark Mulder is recovering from rotator cuff surgery in September.

In a moment of positive news for the Cardinals, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported that Carpenter threw 50 pitches off a mound on Wednesday — no curveballs — in his second mound session since undergoing surgery.

The Tigers, meanwhile, have one of the deepest pitching staffs in baseball, including several highly-touted young players not even on the major league roster. Detroit hopes to get another boost Friday when Kenny Rogers makes his first start of the season as he recovers from a blood clot.

Maroth is 5-2 with a 5.06 ERA this season.

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Re: MLB News and Notes June - 22

Royals sign Thomson, place Elarton on DL
June 22, 2007

MILWAUKEE (AP) -The Kansas City Royals signed right-hander John Thomson to a one-year contract Friday, two days after he was released by Toronto.

Thomson signed a one-year contract with Toronto in the offseason but never pitched for the Blue Jays. He developed a sore shoulder during spring training and was sent to Syracuse on a rehabilitation assignment, going 2-4 with a 4.58 ERA in seven starts.

His contract with the Blue Jays called for a $500,000 base, which would escalate to $1.5 million when he was added to the active roster. Kansas City will pay $209,727, a prorated share of the $380,000 minimum.

The 33-year-old is 62-84 with a 4.69 ERA in nine major league seasons. His best year was 2004, when he went 14-8 with a 3.72 ERA in 33 starts.

In a corresponding move, the Royals placed pitcher Scott Elarton on the 15-day disabled list with a right foot sprain, a move retroactive to Wednesday.

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Re: MLB News and Notes June - 22

Cubs activate Ramirez from 15-day DL
June 22, 2007

CHICAGO (AP) -The Chicago Cubs activated slugging third baseman Aramis Ramirez from the 15-day disabled list before Friday's game against the White Sox.

Ramirez, who leads the Cubs with 13 homers, went on the DL with tendinitis in his left knee on June 11 after injuring it running to first against Milwaukee five days earlier. He was the designated hitter on Friday and will likely stay there the rest of the weekend. He will also wear a knee brace the rest of the year.

``I'm not 100 percent,'' said Ramirez, who was batting .299 and tied for the team lead with 39 RBIs entering Friday's game. ``I can use the three days of DH.''

Manager Lou Piniella said ``we'll see what he can handle'' once the Cubs resume National League play, although he anticipates giving Ramirez some extra days off.

To make room for Ramirez, the Cubs optioned right-handed pitcher Sean Gallagher to Triple-A Iowa following Thursday's game at Texas. Gallagher had a 9.53 ERA in three relief appearances after being selected from Double-A Tennessee on June 6.

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Re: MLB News and Notes June - 22

Dellucci out 8 weeks with hamstring injury
June 22, 2007

WASHINGTON (AP) -Cleveland Indians left fielder David Dellucci will require surgery for his injured hamstring and will be sidelined about eight weeks.

Dellucci was hurt while running out a grounder during Tuesday's 9-6 loss to the Philadelphia Phillies. An MRI exam revealed a high-grade tear in his left hamstring. He will undergo surgery Thursday at the Cleveland Clinic.

``This is not career-ending; this is not career-threatening,'' trainer Lonnie Soloff said. ``He will return to 100 percent at some point this year.''

Signed to a three-year contract as a free agent on Dec. 6, Dellucci is hitting .234 with four home runs and 20 RBIs in 54 games.

Jason Michaels started in left field for the second straight game Friday night against the Washington Nationals.

``We'll just continue on with that and see where it leads us,'' manager Eric Wedge said.

One candidate to replace Dellucci would have been Shin-Soo Choo, but he strained his left elbow playing for Triple-A Buffalo. Instead, the Indians recalled Ben Francisco, who was batting .329 with six homers, 34 RBIs and 15 stolen bases at Buffalo.

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Re: MLB News and Notes June - 22

Tejada goes on 15-day DL
June 22, 2007

PHOENIX (AP) -Baltimore Orioles shortstop Miguel Tejada was placed on the 15-day disabled list with a non-displaced fracture of his left wrist on Friday, ending his streak of consecutive games played at 1,152, the fifth-longest in big league history.

Tejada was hit on the wrist by San Diego's Doug Brocail on Wednesday night. Tejada appeared in the Orioles' 6-3 win Thursday at San Diego just long enough to extend his streak, coming out for a pinch-runner after reaching on a fielder's choice in the first inning.

Tejada last missed a game on May 31, 2000. He had started all 558 games since signing a free-agent contract with the Orioles before the 2004 season.

Tejada is hitting .306 with seven homers and 41 RBIs in 72 games. Tejada traveled with the team to Phoenix where the Orioles are opening a series against the Diamondbacks.

In a corresponding move, the team recalled outfielder Jon Knott from Triple-A Norfolk. Knott was expected to join the Orioles in time for Friday's game.

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