MLB News and Notes July - 8

MLB News and Notes July - 8

Bynum goes on DL with strained hamstring
July 7, 2007

ARLINGTON, Texas (AP) -The Baltimore Orioles placed shortstop Freddie Bynum on the 15-day disabled list with a strained left hamstring prior to Saturday night's game against the Texas Rangers.

The Orioles promoted shortstop Luis Hernandez from Triple-A Norfolk to replace Bynum.

Bynum left Friday night's game against the Rangers in the third inning after his foot struck first base awkwardly while running out a grounder. Bynum had a .277 average with two homers and eight RBIs in 47 games for the Orioles this season.

Brandon Fahey started at shortstop on Saturday night.

Bynum becomes the eighth Oriole currently on the disabled list, a group that includes starting shortstop Miguel Tejada, out with a fractured left wrist.

Hernandez, a 23-year-old switch hitter, started the season at Double-A Bowie before being promoted to Norfolk, where he was batting .273 in nine games.

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Notes from Saturday's AL games
July 7, 2007

CLEVELAND: C Victor Martinez left Saturday's game in the fifth inning after fouling a ball off his left knee and is listed as day to day. ``It's a little sore but it's nothing to worry about,'' Martinez said. ``I think I'll be able to play (Sunday).'' ... LHP Aaron Fultz (right intercostal strain) threw a bullpen session before Saturday's game and will throw live batting practice on Thursday. ... The Indians hit four home runs Saturday and have hit an American League-leading 109 so far this season. ... RHP Fausto Carmona (10-4) got the win Saturday. Along with LHP C.C. Sabathia (12-3), the Indians have two 10-win starters before the All-Star break for the first time since 1956, when Bob Lemon and Early Wynn both had 10 wins.

TORONTO: OF Reed Johnson went 0-for-4 Saturday, snapping a seven-game hitting streak that dated to April 11. Johnson, who underwent surgery in April to repair a herniated disk in his back, was activated from the 60-day disabled list Friday. ... Aaron Hill snapped an 0-15 slump with a single in the fourth inning. ... DH Frank Thomas had two infield hits Saturday and finished 3-for-4. Thomas also scored his 1,440th career run, eighth most among active major leaguers. ... RHP Shaun Marcum (4-3) lost for the first time in 11 starts since joining Toronto's rotation May 13. Marcum allowed eight earned runs, the most he's allowed since giving up nine runs to Baltimore on Aug. 19, 2006.


MINNESOTA: Mike Redmond was back in the lineup Saturday with seven stitches in his head. Redmond was hit by Jim Thome's bat in the first inning of Friday's second game against the White Sox. ``He came in all fired up today,'' Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said, adding that when he first saw Redmond after the accident Friday he was getting an injection into his head. Thome went to him before the game to see how he was. ``If I'm going to take seven stitches from anybody, it would be Jim Thome. He's a great guy,'' Redmond said. Redmond had two hits Saturday, batting third. Joe Mauer, who ended up catching both games of the doubleheader because of the injury to Redmond on Friday, got the day off. ... The Twins had beaten the White Sox five straight before Saturday. ... Minnesota is now 5-5 on its long road trip right before the All-Star break ... The victory in the second game Friday was the 500th as manager for Ron Gardenhire, putting him ino third place on the team's career list behind Tom Kelly (1,140) and Same Mele (522). Gardenhire reached the 500 mark in his sixth season.

CHICAGO: Paul Konerko's homer was his 500th extra base hit with the White Sox. ... To honor Mark Buehrle in what might have been his final game with the White Sox, Konerko tried to get all this teammates to remain in the dugout while Buehrle ran to the field to warm up for the eighth inning. It didn't work. ``He said the fans didn't really pay too much attention to it because they didn't start cheering,'' Buehrle said. ``I didn't know what he was doing and I guess the fans didn't know what he was doing either.'' ... Buehrle's next start, if he remains with the White Sox, would probably come Friday in Baltimore after the All-Star break. ``Buehrle is a special kid, we all know, everybody knows. When people are talking about different scenarios, it's emotional,'' White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen said. ``Hopefully when we come back we pencil his name in the lineup.''' ... Jermaine Dye was a late scratch with flu-like symptons.


LOS ANGELES: 1B Casey Kotchman snapped an 0-for-13 slide with a 12th-inning single. ... The Angels have won 19 of their last 28 games against the Yankees and lead the season series 4-1. ... Howie Kendrick made several fine plays at second base. ``He's obviously separating his defense from his offense and keeping his head in the game,'' manager Mike Scioscia said. ... RHP Scot Shields threw three innings for the first time since Sept. 16, 2004, at Seattle. He hasn't allowed a run in his last 18 outings. ``I don't think there's any doubt what his value is,'' Scioscia said. ``This guy is, in our estimation, the best setup guy in our league. ... He's been terrific for the last four years.'' ... Los Angeles improved to 4-1 in extra-inning games.

NEW YORK: RHP Roger Clemens has pitched at least eight innings in consecutive starts for the first time since June 2001. ... The Yankees will go into the All-Star break with a losing record for the first time since 1995. ... LHP Andy Pettitte will start the team's first game after the All-Star break on Thursday night at Tampa Bay. Pettitte has been struggling lately, so manager Joe Torre suggested he watch some old video of himself to see if that helps. ... 1B Andy Phillips sat out again with a sore neck. ``He's better, but he's not there yet,'' Torre said. ... The Yankees made five errors for the first time since a 16-inning loss against Oakland on Aug. 9, 2002, according to the Elias Sports Bureau. ``The nature of the errors - it wasn't like they were sloppy,'' Torre said. ``Guys made diving plays to stop balls. ... Sure, it cost you a ballgame, but it's certainly not something I'm going to dwell on for sure, because these guys played their tails off.'' ... New York lost for the fifth time in 17 home games. ... CF Melky Cabrera struck out five times, the fourth time in franchise history a Yankees player has fanned five times. Phillips was the previous player to do it on May 2, 2005, at Tampa Bay. ... New York struck out a season-high 14 times.


SEATTLE: LHP George Sherrill pitched a scoreless ninth inning and has allowed only one run in his last 28 appearances spanning 18 2-3 innings. ``I'll say it again, George is an All-Star. He's been great,'' manager John McLaren said. ... McLaren announced his rotation for after the All-Star break, with Felix Hernandez opening a four-game series against Detroit on Thursday, followed by Jarrod Washburn, Miguel Batista and Jeff Weaver. ... 3B Adrian Beltre is 10-for-21 with three doubles, three homers and 10 RBIs in the first six games of Seattle's road trip.

OAKLAND: LHP Lenny DiNardo threw 6 1-3 scoreless innings in relief of Rich Harden, the longest relief outing in the majors without giving up a run since Aaron Small went 6 2-3 scoreless for the Yankees on Sept. 24, 2005, against Toronto. DiNardo pitched longer in relief Saturday than he did in any of his seven starts. ... Closer Huston Street threw breaking balls off flat ground for the first time as he works his way back from irritation in his right ulnar nerve. ... OF Shannon Stewart had one of Oakland's two hits to extend his hitting streak to 13 games, his longest since a 13-gamer in 2002. He is batting .464 (26-for-56) during the streak. ... OF Bobby Kielty could be activated from the DL on Sunday after being out since April 29 with a calf injury.


BOSTON: Red Sox manager Terry Francona said RHP Curt Schilling, on the diasbled list with tendonitis in his right shoulder, is ``making very good progress.'' Schilling threw on Tuesday and Wednesday and will be evaluated again after the All-Star Break... 1B Kevin Youkilis missed his third straight game with tightness in his right quadriceps, but he and Francona are hoping he'll be able to play after the All-Star break. ... David Ortiz ended two slumps with his first-inning homer Saturday. He hadn't homered in 13 games, and was hitting just .105 in 19 career at_bats against Jeremy Bonderman. ... The Red Sox were trying for their 1000th victory over the Tigers on Saturday.

DETROIT: RHP Jeremy Bonderman continued to struggle at the beginning of games, allowing two runs in the first inning Saturday night. Opponents are hitting .373 against Bonderman in the first inning, including seven homers. After the first, he has allowed only three homers and a .222 batting average. ... The Tigers were anticipating an eighth-straight sellout Saturday night, which would be the longest streak since Comerica Park opened in 2000. ... Craig Monroe returned to left field on Saturday after a day off on Friday. Monroe is hitting .219 this season. ... Ninety-year-old Virgil Trucks and 80-year-old Joe Ginsberg will be at Sunday's game to honor Justin Verlander and Ivan Rodriguez. Verlander's no-hitter against Milwaukee on June 12 was the first by a Tiger at home since Trucks did it against Washington on May 15, 1952. Ginsberg and Rodriguez were the catchers in the two games.


TAMPA BAY: Pitching coach Jim Hickey was back with the team after a 12-game absence following surgery to reattach the retina in his right eye. He was hurt in an accident on the golf course. His return means minor-league pitching coordinator Dick Bosman will no longer fill in. Hickey, manager Joe Maddon said, ``looked beat-up. He looked like George Chuvalo following the first Ali fight.'' ... 2B B.J. Upton, on the DL since June 14 with a left quadriceps strain, could be back right after the All-Star break, Maddon said. He planned to play a full rehab game Saturday at Triple-A Vero Beach. Also playing rehab games at Vero is C Shawn Riggans, whose return is not so certain.

KANSAS CITY: The prognosis for DH Mike Sweeney is worse than originally thought. The Royals now say he'll be out at least another six weeks following arthroscopic surgery on his right knee. ``They had to do a little more than they anticipated,'' said manager Buddy Bell. ``He had a couple of chunks of cartilage that was underneath the surface. It was a little more than they thought, so it's going to be six weeks at least.'' Billy Butler will continue to fill in as DH, which is both good and bad for the 21-year-old rookie. It's good because he won't be sent back to Triple-A Omaha. But it's bad because the Royals want him to learn to play first base and do not feel comfortable putting him there in the majors. ... Saturday - 07-07-07 - was C John Buck's birthday. He turned 27. And he was batting seventh.


BALTIMORE: Umpire Brian Knight admitted he missed a key call at home plate in Friday night's game, and interim manager Dave Trembley accepted that explanation. The Orioles had the bases loaded in the seventh inning when Rangers LHP C.J. Wilson threw a pitch that bounced off the wall behind home plate and directly to catcher Adam Melhuse. Melhuse made a diving tag on Chris Gomez, who was called out by Knight on a close play. Trembley argued and after the game, Knight admitted to a pool reporter that after viewing a replay, he missed the call. ``I was told that they said the wrong call was made and that's good enough for me,'' Trembley said. Trembley said his team has been victimized by bad calls three times in his first 16 games in the Baltimore dugout, but he still would not be in favor of instant replay. ``I don't like it,'' he said. ``Baseball is the last sport standing. Let's keep it the way it is.''. ... Trembley said there was a good chance 3B Melvin Mora will return to the lineup on Sunday. Mora missed his sixth straight game due to a bruised left instep on Saturday night. Rangers DH Sammy Sosa sent Mora some food that is supposed to have healing powers. ``Hopefully that has a miraculous effect on his recovery abilities and he'll be able to play tomorrow,'' Trembley said.

TEXAS: Manager Ron Washington said 1B Mark Teixeira will make a rehab appearance with Double-A Frisco on Wednesday. It has not been determined whether Teixeira will make one or two starts with Frisco. Teixeira was hitting .302 with 12 home runs and 41 RBIs before going on the disabled list June 9 with a strained left quadriceps. ... Washington said RHP Akinori Otsuka feels good after leaving Sunday's game with stiffness in his right forearm. But Washington said he's going to stay away from using him out of the bullpen before the All-Star break.

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Notes from Saturday's NL games
July 7, 2007

ATLANTA: Jarrod Saltalamacchia was back in the lineup Saturday against San Diego, but at first base, not catcher. On Friday night, he took a foul ball off his left temple and came out of the game as a precaution. ``I don't think he'll get hit in the head over there,'' manager Bobby Cox said. ``You never know. He might.'' Saltalamacchia came through unscathed, including hitting a double and scoring in the third inning of Atlanta's 8-5 loss.

SAN DIEGO:
Reliever Doug Brocail's fourth-inning single was his first hit since he had an RBI triple for Houston on Sept. 16, 1995, in Montreal. According to the Elias Sports Bureau, the 12 years between hits ties Brocail for the sixth-longest stretch ever. ... Brocail was in the game because starter David Wells was ejected for questioning home plate umpire Ed Hickox's calls. ... Trevor Hoffman has converted 21 straight save opportunities.


NEW YORK: A day after All-Star shortstop Jose Reyes was replaced for the second time in a week after failing to run hard on a grounder, manager Willie Randolph insisted that his move shouldn't be made into a major issue. ``I have two rules: Be on time and play hard,'' he said. ``If you don't play hard, you sit next to me. It's no big deal.'' He said he never considered keeping Reyes out on Saturday. ``He's in my lineup,'' he said. ``I didn't really debate it.'' Randolph also said that he wasn't trying to amp his team up with the move. ``That's not why I did what I did,'' he said. ``I'm not here to spark anything or send any messages.'' ... Mets closer Billy Wagner showed off a picture of a group of soldiers in T-shirts that he sent to them. He got the idea to design a Mets T-shirt for the troops after tiring of seeing so many wearing Yankees gear. The shirt features a picture of him pitching and has a Mets logo.

HOUSTON: Lance Berkman didn't start on Saturday because of his career .111 batting average against Mets starter Tom Glavine. ``I'm like 1-for-50 on Glavine or something like that,'' Berkman exaggerated. It's not quite that bad as Berkman's actual number against Glavine is 2-for-18. ``He's not had very good success against Glavine so I decided to try something different,'' manager Phil Garner said. Mark Loretta, who entered the game batting .391 against Glavine, started in his place.


CHICAGO: C Henry Blanco, on the 15-day disabled list since May 31 because of a cervical herniated disc, will begin throwing from behind the plate Sunday and manager Lou Piniella said he is close to being sent out for a minor-league rehabilitation assignment. ... The Cubs entered Saturday's action 21st in the majors with only 74 home runs. ``We thought coming out of camp we'd have more power than we've had,'' Piniella said. ``But the important thing is we are winning. It doesn't matter if it's with the home run ball or not.'' ... The Cubs are the only team in baseball with a .500 or better overall record that has a losing record at home. Chicago is 20-21 at Wrigley Field. ``We need to pick it up at home, there's no question,'' Piniella said.

PITTSBURGH: 1B Adam LaRoche was scratched an hour before the game Saturday night with what was described as left knee irritation. 1B Josh Phelps started in his place. LaRoche is hitting .432 with five home runs and 11 RBIs in his past nine games. ... OF Xavier Nady started in centerfield for only the seventh time this season Saturday. Manager Jim Tracy said it was an effort to keep the streaking Ryan Doumit in the lineup. Doumit, a catcher by trade, played in Nady's usual right-field spot so that C Ronny Paulino could stay in the lineup. Tracy continually lauds Paulino's abilities calling games behind the plate. ... After having a losing record in all but one homestand this season, the Pirates clinched a winning 10-game homestand by winning six of the first eight games of the current set.


MILWAUKEE: With two homers Friday night in his 38th game, 3B Ryan Braun shattered a franchise record the quickest 10 home runs to start a major league career. The previous record holder was Bill Schroeder, now a Brewers' broadcaster, who needed 61 games to reach that number in 1984. ... 2B Rickie Weeks remained in the lineup despite entering Saturday's game mired in a 2-for-35 slump. Manager Ned Yost said he's sticking with Weeks. ``He has zero luck,'' Yost said. ... OF Tony Gwynn, who was recalled from Triple-A Nashville to replace injured OF Bill Hall on Friday, started in center field Saturday. Gwynn is likely to bat seventh in most games, Yost said.

WASHINGTON: 1B Dmitri Young, whose .341 average leads the Nationals, was deprived of a hit Friday because of a curious defensive alignment employed by Milwaukee. SS J.J. Hardy, stationed behind second base, easily gloved his grounder up the middle. ``I was real surprised about that,'' said Young, who hasn't seen such a shift because he isn't a dead pull hitter. ``They took that away from me last night. Obviously, they've got some good scouting and they've done their homework.'' ... LHP Micah Bowie, on the 15-day disabled list because of inflammation in his left hip, probably won't be ready to make the fifth start after the all-star break, manager Manny Acta said. ``We'll see, but right now, it doesn't look like he'll be able to make that turn,'' Acta said.


ARIZONA:
RHP Brandon Webb, the NL's 2006 Cy Young winner, was chosen for the NL All-Star team, replacing injured Colorado LHP Brian Fuentes. He also made the All-Star game last season, pitching one perfect inning. ... Webb's selection forced manager Bob Melvin to reconsider his pitching plans for next week. He hadn't decided on his starters for a home series against San Diego. ... SS Stephen Drew's error in the first inning ended the Diamondbacks' four-game streak without an error, their best of the season. ... RHP Yusmeiro Petit makes his third start on Sunday. Melvin hasn't decided whether he will stay in the rotation after the All-Star break.

CINCINNATI:
INF Juan Castro has a partially torn ligament in his throwing elbow. He got a cortisone injection and went on the 15-day DL. He'll abstain from throwing for about 10 days, then see if the elbow is any better. Surgery is an option if it's not. ... LHP Eddie Guardado threw 30 pitches in the bullpen without problem. Guardado is coming back from reconstructive elbow surgery last Sept. 8. There is no target date for his return. ... The Reds overhauled the bullpen again, adding RHPs Kirk Saarloos and Jared Burton. They replaced RHPs Ricky Stone (designated for assignment) and Marcus McBeth (optioned to Triple-A Louisville.) ``It's a constant tryout,'' interim manager Pete Mackanin said. ``You've got to get the right mix.''


SAN FRANCISCO: INF Rich Aurilia is pain-free and it shows in his numbers. He played for the fourth straight day - this time at 3B in place of the struggling Pedro Feliz (0-for-11 on the road trip) - since coming off the DL after a neck injury. Aurilia batted .500, going 6-for-12, with a home run, two RBIs, three runs scored and a double, in the previous three games. ``I'm looser now that the pain's gone,'' said Aurilia, who still plans to have twice-weekly acupuncture treatments on his neck when the team is home. ... Manager Bruce Bochy plans to give more rest to his regulars in the second half, which includes a grueling stretch from July 31 until Aug. 29 with 31 games in 30 days. C Bengie Molina and Feliz are expected to get more time off, and rookie OF Fred Lewis will factor more into the mix. ``This 25-man roster's going to get used a lot,'' Bochy said. ... LHP Jonathan Sanchez, nursing a rib cage strain on his left side that landed him on the DL, played catch for the second straight day. ... Backup C Eliezer Alfonzo, on the 60-day DL recovering from arthroscopic knee surgery, also threw for the second straight day. He played catch Friday for the first time in his healing process. Alfonzo hopes to begin some light jogging after the All-Star break.

ST. LOUIS: After viewing a replay of CF So Taguchi's dropped fly ball at the wall on Bengie Molina's drive that allowed three runs in the fifth inning of Friday's 4-3 loss, manager Tony La Russa agreed with the official scoring call of an error. ``He should have caught it,'' La Russa said. ``I'm surprised he didn't catch it.'' ... 3B Scott Rolen was in a yearlong power slump with only four home runs and 19 extra-base hits. He hit 22 homers last year. ... The Cardinals have four days off for the All-Star break instead of the usual three, so La Russa has scheduled a mandatory workout for Thursday before the start of a three-game series in Philadelphia that begins the following day. ... Scott Spiezio, who missed nine games with an infected left index finger that had him hospitalized for a few days last week, started in RF on Saturday after returning with a pinch-hit single on Friday.


PHILADELPHIA: RHP Ryan Madson continues to experience tightness and soreness in his right arm. ... Manager Charlie Manuel said he can't predict how soon after the All-Star break RHP Tom Gordon would return to the team. ``I don't know other than when he's 100 percent,'' he said. ... Manuel remained upset with RHP Antonio Alfonseca for giving up a tying home run to OF Brad Hawpe with two outs in the ninth. ``I told him to throw sinkers down and away,'' Manuel said. ``That means down and away.''

COLORADO: The Rockies aren't planning on using reliever Brian Fuentes again until after the All-Star break thanks to a strained back muscle. Fuentes also will miss the All-Star game. He would've been making his third appearance. ... Manager Clint Hurdle wants to take a cautious approach with OF Willy Taveras, who's battling a tweaked right quadriceps injury. Taveras was lifted in the sixth inning Friday night and may not play again before the break. ``He wasn't moving around very well in the outfield,'' Hurdle said. ``We'll keep our fingers crossed we can get him back to full strength.'' ... Hurdle hasn't set his pitching rotation for after the break. He's waiting to see how RHP Jason Hirsh is recovering. Hirsh is on the 15-day DL with a sprained right ankle.

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Re: MLB News and Notes July - 8

Baseball Today - July 8
By Associated Press

Atlanta at San Diego (8:05 p.m. EDT.) The Padres go for a series win in their final game before the All-Star break.

STARS Saturday

-Erik Bedard, Orioles, struck out 15 in a two-hit shutout to lead Baltimore to a 3-0 victory over Texas.

-Mark Grudzielanek, Royals, hit a game-ending RBI single with two outs in the ninth inning to lift Kansas City over Tampa Bay 8-7.

-Felix Hernandez, Mariners, allowed only two hits in eight innings to lead Seattle past Oakland 4-0.

-Carlos Beltran, Mets, hit a go-ahead single in the 17th inning of the New York Mets' 5-3 win over Houston.

-Mark Buehrle, White Sox, allowed six hits over eight scoreless innings and the Chicago White Sox defeated Minnesota 3-1.

MARATHON

Carlos Beltran hit a go-ahead single in the 17th inning after making a tremendous catch as the New York Mets won their longest game since 1993, beating the Houston Astros 5-3 Saturday night. The 17 innings matched the amount the Dodgers and Padres played in April.

SWEET 15

Erik Bedard struck out 15 to tie a franchise record and allowed two hits and no walks in his first career shutout, leading Baltimore over Texas 3-0 on Saturday. Bedard, who faced the minimum 27 hitters and, leads the big leagues with 149 strikeouts.

DUEL

Roger Clemens gave up one run in eight innings for the second time in five days but the New York Yankees lost to the Los Angeles Angels 2-1 in 13 innings on Saturday. Not to be outdone, All-Star John Lackey matched a career-high with 11 strikeouts for the Angels.

POTENT PAIR

Fausto Carmona improved to 10-4 in Cleveland's 9-4 victory over Toronto on Saturday. Along with left-hander C.C. Sabathia (12-3), Carmona gives the Indians two 10-win starters before the All-Star break for the first time since 1956, when Bob Lemon and Early Wynn both had 10 wins.

STRAIGHT A'S

Felix Hernandez held Oakland scoreless for a second straight start in Seattle's 4-0 victory Saturday. Hernandez (5-4) allowed two hits, two walks and struck out two over eight innings, extending his scoreless streak to 16 against the A's.

SPEAKING

''That's as good as I've ever seen a pitcher throw. I've never seen so many bad swings in my life. These guys didn't have a chance.'' - Orioles designated hitter Jay Gibbons on teammate Erik Bedard's pitching performance in a 3-0 victory over the Rangers on Saturday night. Bedard struck out 15 to tie a franchise record and allowed two hits in his first career complete game.

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Buehrle agrees to $56 million, 4-year extension
July 8, 2007

CHICAGO (AP) -Mark Buehrle is staying with the White Sox, agreeing Sunday to a $56 million, four-year contract extension through the 2011 season.

Fans at Sunday's game were told of the deal over the public-address system as the White Sox left the field following a 6-3 win over the Minnesota Twins. In the eighth inning, Buehrle was seen in the dugout hugging manager Ozzie Guillen and his teammates.

Buehrle, a three-time All-Star, was eligible to become a free agent after this season. With the White Sox struggling this season just two years after winning the World Series, Buehrle's name popped up often in trade rumors.

He is 6-4 this season with a 3.03 ERA.

He has a $9.5 million salary this year and will earn $14 million annually during the next four seasons. Talks had gone on for weeks, and the sides had been said to be haggling over a no-trade provision.

``There is no question what Mark Buehrle means to this organization, our clubhouse and our fans,'' White Sox general manager Ken Williams said. ``He is one of the very best left-handers in the game today. We cannot be happier to reach this agreement with Mark, and now look forward to this team winning games the remainder of this season and in future years with Mark on the mound.''

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Re: MLB News and Notes July - 8

Marlins' Cabrera out of All-Star Home Run Derby
July 8, 2007

LOS ANGELES (AP) -Florida Marlins third baseman Miguel Cabrera will miss Monday's home run derby at the All-Star Game because of a jammed left shoulder.

Cabrera was in the lineup for Sunday's game against the Dodgers, but didn't play and was replaced by Mike Jacobs in the first inning.

Cabrera has 18 homers, the most by a Marlins player at the break since Carlos Delgado had the same total in 2005.

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Re: MLB News and Notes July - 8

Pujols, Rios final 2 in Home Run Derby
July 8, 2007

ST. LOUIS (AP) -Albert Pujols has agreed to participate in Monday night's Home Run Derby, even though the St. Louis Cardinals' star is mired in a career-worst power slump.

Pujols and Alex Rios of the Toronto Blue Jays were the final two participants added to the field, Major League Baseball spokesman Pat Courtney said Sunday. The Derby will be held in San Francisco, site of Tuesday's All-Star game.

Pujols' homerless streak reached 21 games and a career-worst 71 at_bats when he managed two singles in the Cardinals' 7-6 loss to the Giants on Saturday. He was tied with Chris Duncan for the team lead with 16 homers entering Sunday's game against San Francisco.

Pujols' last homer was off Kansas City's Jimmy Gobble on June 14.

Rios had 17 home runs.

The only other time Pujols has participated in the Home Run Derby was at U.S. Cellular Field in Chicago in 2003. He made it through the first round on a tiebreaker before belting 14 homers in the second round to reach the finals, where he lost by one to Garret Anderson of the Los Angeles Angels.

Pujols hit 49 homers last season and has 266 in his career.

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Re: MLB News and Notes July - 8

Mets activate P Dave Williams from DL
July 8th, 2007

New York, NY (Sports Network) - The New York Mets activated left- handed pitcher Dave Williams from the 15-day disabled list prior to Sunday's game versus the Houston Astros.

The 27-year-old Williams, who will be making his first start of the season Sunday, underwent surgery on his neck for a herniated disc on January 31st. He has a 22-30 career record with a 4.64 earned run average in parts of five seasons with the Pittsburgh Pirates, Cincinnati Reds and Mets.

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