|Rolen, Granderson out with injured fingers; Cabrera closing in on big deal with Tigers|
|Written by Admin|
|Sunday, 23 March 2008 17:25|
Granderson, the Tigers' speedy center fielder, was placed on the 15-day disabled list Sunday. A finger on his right hand was broken Saturday when he was hit by a fastball from Philadelphia left-hander Travis Blackley in the fourth and final inning of a rained-out game.
Granderson and the team had hoped the injury was merely a bruise, but precautionary X-rays revealed the break. Granderson, who was wearing a splint on the hand Sunday, said he likely will miss a minimum of three weeks.
``It throbs a little bit,'' he said.
Granderson batted .302 with 23 homers, 23 triples and 122 runs last year.
Rolen could be missing from Toronto's lineup when the Blue Jays open their season at Yankee Stadium.
The team's new third baseman broke his finger during a routine drill Sunday morning in Dunedin, Fla. He was taking grounders on a back field when a ball hit him on the tip of his right middle finger.
``It ripped his nail completely off his finger,'' general manager J.P. Ricciardi said.
Rolen also broke the bone above his top knuckle, and it's unclear how long he will be out. The Blue Jays begin the season March 31 in New York.
``It's a non-displaced fracture, which is the good news,'' Ricciardi said.
Rolen was acquired from St. Louis this offseason for fellow third baseman Troy Glaus in a swap of oft-injured All-Stars. Rolen was to travel to Baltimore on Sunday night to a hand specialist.
``He will see the specialist (Monday) and we will know more,'' Ricciardi said. ``The fracture is actually not the problem. You can play with a fracture, it's just losing the nail.''
Ricciardi is optimistic Rolen won't be out too long.
``I'm not a doctor, but the early prognosis is it isn't going to be six weeks, so I don't even want to throw a schedule out there,'' the GM said. ``I can say this, he won't be lost for the year.''
Marco Scutaro will fill in at third base while Rolen is out.
The Tigers also have a new third baseman in Cabrera and they plan to keep him around for a while - at a hefty price.
Cabrera and the Tigers have reached a preliminary agreement on a $152.3 million, eight-year contract, according to a person familiar with the deal. The person spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because the contract was not yet completed. The slugger must pass a physical before the agreement can be finalized.
Acquired from Florida with pitcher Dontrelle Willis in a blockbuster trade last December, Cabrera agreed on Jan. 18 to an $11.3 million salary for this season. The new deal adds $141 million over the following seven seasons.
He will earn $15 million in 2009, when he would have been eligible for salary arbitration. He will average $21 million annually over the next six seasons, when he would have been eligible for free agency.
Cabrera's average salary of $19,037,500 will be the fourth-highest in the major leagues behind those of New York Yankees third baseman Alex Rodriguez ($27.5 million), New York Mets pitcher Johan Santana ($22,916,667) and Boston left fielder Manny Ramirez ($20 million).
His deal will be the fourth-highest package. Rodriguez is starting a $275 million, 10-year contract, Yankees shortstop Derek Jeter is entering the eighth season of a $189 million, 10-year deal and Ramirez is in the final guaranteed season of a $160 million, eight-year contract.
Cabrera averaged 32 homers and 115 RBIs while hitting .318 the past four seasons for the Marlins.
``He's a future-type player,'' Tigers slugger Gary Sheffield said. ``Anytime you can get a player with that amount of years on this team, you're looking at multiple championships.''
In other news, Milwaukee left-hander Chris Capuano was told he has a torn ligament in his pitching elbow and will probably need Tommy John surgery for the second time in his career.
The 29-year-old Capuano, who was competing for a spot in the rotation this spring, injured his elbow in an exhibition game Monday against Seattle.
Capuano will get a second opinion from Dr. James Andrews in Birmingham, Ala., in the next couple of days. Andrews performed Capuano's first elbow ligament replacement surgery in 2002, when he was pitching in Arizona's farm system. It took Capuano 11 months to come back from that first Tommy John surgery.
Capuano won 18 games in 2005 and made the NL All-Star team in 2006. He bolted to a 5-0 record last season but lost his last 12 decisions and pitched in 18 consecutive losing games by the team before being moved to the bullpen.
In other news, the Blue Jays released outfielder Reed Johnson.
At Fort Myers, Fla., Boston ace Josh Beckett threw two scoreless innings in a minor league game, an important step in his return from back spasms.
At Tempe, Ariz., Los Angeles Angels setup man Scot Shields is experiencing right forearm discomfort and could remain in Arizona for extended spring training when the team breaks camp.
In spring training games:
Red Sox 9, Yomiuri 2
At Tokyo, J.D. Drew hit his second homer in two exhibition games, a grand slam in the sixth inning to help Boston rout Yomiuri. Boston starter Tim Wakefield gave up two runs in five innings.
Cardinals 14, Mets 4
At Port St. Lucie, Fla., both leading candidates for the Mets No. 5 starter job got roughed up, as Orlando Hernandez and Mike Pelfrey combined to give up 13 runs and 17 hits in 7 1-3 innings.
Twins 3, Orioles 1
At Fort Myers, Fla., Minnesota's Francisco Liriano pitched four hitless innings in his fourth start of the spring. He is hoping to break camp with the team 15 months after elbow surgery.
Phillies 15, Blue Jays 7
At Dunedin, Fla., Toronto's A.J. Burnett allowed seven runs and eight hits in 5 1-3 innings and Philadelphia's Cole Hamels gave up five runs and nine hits in 5 1-3 innings.
Braves 4, Astros 2
At Kissimmee, Fla., Mike Hampton gave up two runs in six innings in his quest to come back after two elbow injuries, and Atlanta beat Woody Williams and Houston.
Rays 10, Reds 9
At Sarasota, Fla., Johnny Cueto of Cincinnati was roughed up for the first time this spring, retiring only two of the 10 batters he faced in the first inning and getting chased after only 19 minutes.
Indians 3, Tigers 3, 10 innings
At Lakeland, Fla., Yorman Bazardo retired all nine batters he face in Detroit's tie with Cleveland. Fausto Carmona gave up three runs - two earned - and six hits in six innings for Cleveland.
Pirates 8, Yankees 0
At Bradenton, Fla., Pittsburgh's Paul Maholm allowed two hits in six shutout innings against a New York squad composed mostly of backups.
Marlins 4, Nationals 2
At Jupiter, Fla., Rick VandenHurk made a solid case for a spot in the Florida rotation, allowing two runs - one earned - and four hits over four innings.
Rockies 8, Dodgers 2
At Tucson, Ariz., Kip Wells is headed to Colorado's bullpen after manager Clint Hurdle decided he would be a better fit in a relief role. Brad Hawpe was back in the lineup for the Rockies after missing the last 11 games with a bum left elbow. Hawpe finished 2-for-3 with a double and a triple to raise his spring average to .417. He also drove in four runs.
Royals 6, White Sox 5
At Tucson, White Sox starter John Danks allowed five runs, six hits and four walks in 4 1-3 innings. Royals starter Zack Greinke gave up two runs and four hits in six innings, his longest stint of the spring.
Angels 8, Mariners 2
At Tempe, Ariz., Dustin Moseley pitched five scoreless innings and Los Angeles got home runs from Gary Matthews Jr. and Juan Rivera.
Brewers 5, Diamondbacks 4
At Phoenix, Rickie Weeks returned from a hand injury and hit a three-run homer for Milwaukee.
Right-hander Jeff Suppan started for the Brewers and went five innings, allowing five hits and three runs - two earned.
Cubs 7, Padres 3
At Peoria, Ariz., Kerry Wood struck out two in a scoreless inning during his third appearance in four days, and the Cubs scored seven runs off Greg Maddux. In contention to be Chicago's closer, Wood has a 3.60 ERA in 10 innings this spring with 10 strikeouts and no walks.
Rangers 4, Giants 2
At Surprise, Ariz., Tim Lincecum, slowed by a mildly strained right groin, made only his fourth start for San Francisco this spring and gave up a two-run homer to Ben Broussard in six innings. He struck out seven.