Notes from Saturday's games Print
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Saturday, 28 April 2007 15:35
MLB Headline News

 AMERICAN LEAGUE
Twins-Tigers
MINNESOTA: Twins manager Ron Gardenhire enjoyed Saturday's win over Detroit, but was almost as excited by the news from the NFL draft. Gardenhire clapped his hands when he heard that the Vikings had selected Oklahoma running back Adrian Peterson in the first round. ``That's great - that's just what I wanted them to do,'' said Gardenhire. ``We need more Okies in Minnesota, and that kid is great.'' ... Torii Hunter took some good-natured teasing from his teammates after dropping a third-inning flyball before recovering to force Curtis Granderson at third base. ``(Michael) Cuddyer was telling me that I was just trying to catch up, because he already had two assists,'' Hunter said. ``I was afraid that (Jason) Bartlett was going to collide with me, but he's so scrawny that I told him the next time, I'm catching the ball and running right over him.''
DETROIT: It took 16 at-bats and nearly three weeks, but rookie C Mike Rabelo finally got his first major-league hit on Saturday. Starting for the second straight day because of Ivan Rodriguez's bruised foot, Rabelo bounced Carlos Silva's sixth-inning pitch up the middle for a single. ``I'm happy it is over,'' he said. ``Now I can relax a little.'' ... Magglio Ordonez's two-run double in the first inning was the 300th of his career. ... Justin Verlander, who finished second in the American League with eight pickoffs last season, picked off Nick Punto in the first inning Saturday. Tigers reliever Wil Ledezma then picked off Jason Tyner in the fourth.
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Rangers-Blue Jays
th home run. ``I probably will be because I was one of the few guys who believed in Sammy,'' Washington said. ``When I talked to him in January he won me over.'' Sosa is five away from becoming the fifth player in baseball history to hit 600 or more homers.
TORONTO: 3B Troy Glaus (sore heel) was activated off the disabled list before Saturday's game and started at third base. Glaus batted sixth and went 1-2 with two walks before he was replaced by John McDonald for defensive purposes in the ninth. INF Ryan Roberts was demoted to triple-A Syracuse to make room on the roster. ... The Blue Jays have moved RHP Josh Towers (1-3, 4.70) to the bullpen and will put RHP Victor Zambrano (0-1, 5.06) in the starting rotation. Zambrano is expected to make his first start next Wednesday in Cleveland. He's been pitching out of the bullpen so far this season and missed most of last year after undergoing the second Tommy John surgery of his career. ... Saturday's 9-8, 10-inning loss marked the second time this season that the Blue Jays have lost a game in which they scored eight runs. Toronto is 2-1 in extra-inning games.
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Red Sox-Yankees
BOSTON: RHP Tim Wakefield dropped to 9-14 against the Yankees. The knuckleballer walked six in 5 1-3 innings. It was the third time in 192 games that Wakefield has walked at least six. The other two also came at Yankee Stadium. ``You never like to pitch like that, but you take a little bit of pride knowing that I did the best that I could do today,'' he said. ... Boston had won six straight against the Yankees, dating to last season. ... 3B Mike Lowell extended his hitting streak to 14 games but also made two errors, giving him eight this season. He made six errors in 153 games last year. ... LF Manny Ramirez made a nice running catch of Alex Rodriguez's deep drive to save a run in the third inning. Then he tossed the ball into the left-field stands - on his second attempt.
th game. ... Bobby Abreu was 0-for-3 with two walks and is in a 1-for-26 slump. ... Jason Giambi started at 1B for the first time this year. ... Bothered by an aching back and ailing legs, OF Johnny Damon was the DH. ``He's dealing with some issues,'' manager Joe Torre said. ``He feels it's getting better.'' Damon plans to see a doctor on Monday, when the Yankees are off. ``We'll see what happens after that,'' Torre said.
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Devil Rays-Athletics
TAMPA BAY: Elijah Dukes ended an 0-for-14 streak with runners in scoring position with an RBI single in the fifth and finished with a career-best three hits. ... Casey Fossum plunked Mark Ellis in the second, the 44th hit batsman by the lefty since the start of the 2004 season. ... Carl Crawford's error followed by SS Ben Zobrist's fielding miscue in the second gave Tampa Bay 21 errors in their last 18 games. The Devil Rays committed only one in their initial six contests. ... The Devil Rays have been outscored 22-4 in the first inning this year. ... Fossum (2-2), coming off back-to-back wins over Baltimore and the New York Yankees, got in trouble in a hurry. He was tagged for a season-high nine runs in five innings. The left-hander gave up six or more earned runs for the third time in five starts, allowed nine hits, struck out five and walked three.
OAKLAND: Ace RHP Rich Harden, on the DL with a strained throwing shoulder, is being given several days off from throwing and will be out at least another week - perhaps available to return sometime during a series at Kansas City from May 8-10. ... Bobby Kielty briefly returned to the lineup to play left field after sitting out in recent days with a strained left calf but Danny Putnam replaced him in the top of the third after Kielty apparently had problems running the bases after his second-inning single. ... Nick Swisher could be back for Tuesday's game at Boston, which would be a week after he strained his left hamstring in Baltimore. But he hasn't begun running yet though he hit off a tee Saturday. ... The A's on Saturday sent RHP Marcus McBeth to the Cincinnati Reds as one of the two players to be named later in Friday's trade in which Oakland acquired outfielder Chris Denorfia. ... Ellis hit his first homer of the year with a solo shot to start the fifth. Ellis, who also singled and scored in the first, had a hit at home for the third straight game and just his sixth and seventh hits at the Coliseum all season.
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Orioles-Indians
BALTIMORE: Manager Sam Perlozzo is staying upbeat during the team's five-game losing streak. ``When a team is struggling, you usually don't get the big hit that you need and it spreads around,'' he said. ``You have to try and stay patient and stay positive.'' ... Perlozzo wants more innings from his starting pitchers. ``We're not getting deep enough into games,'' he said. ``We're going to our bullpen too early. We need a starter to go seven or eight innings.''... RHP Jaret Wright (sore shoulder) is expected to come off the disabled list and start Sunday's game against the Indians. Wright is 0-2 with a 6.14 ERA in two starts...RHP Scott Williamson (right triceps tendon tightness) is throwing in the bullpen at Double-A Bowie.
CLEVELAND: LHP Cliff Lee (abdominal strain) is expected to start Thursday's game against Toronto. He was injured in late February and hasn't pitched in the majors this season. Lee pitched five scoreless innings in a rehab start for Double-A Akron Friday. ... Manager Eric Wedge said OF David Dellucci (sore left calf) will be in the lineup Sunday. Dellucci last started April 21. ... 3B Andy Marte (strained left hamstring) will begin a rehab at Triple-A Buffalo on Sunday. He was injured running out a ground ball April 22. Marte is eligible to come off the DL on May 8.
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Angels-White Sox
LOS ANGELES: OF Garret Anderson was out of the lineup on Saturday after leaving Friday night's game with a tight right hip flexor in the eighth inning. ``He is a little sore today. (He) is a little bit better than he thought he is going to be, but still, we're going to take it day-to-day and make sure this thing is at a level where he is not going to be a high risk, so we'll keep looking at it every day,'' said Angels manager Mike Scioscia. Anderson will also likely miss Sunday's game. ... INF Chone Figgins made his second rehab start for Triple-A Salt Lake City on Friday and finished 2-for-4 while playing at third base on Friday night. Figgins is on the disabled list with fractures in his index and middle fingers on his right hand. ``He is really moving well. He will play (Saturday) and (Sunday) and we will look at it where he is Sunday,'' Scioscia said.
. He left Friday's game after fouling off a pitch in the first inning of Friday's game against the Angels. Thome had missed Chicago's previous two games with mild irritation of his right rib cage. Thome leads the White Sox with five home runs, a .340 batting average and 25 walks. Thome has 477 career homers.
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Royals-Mariners
KANSAS CITY: RHP Octavio Dotel threw for a second straight day, playing catch at 150-feet, then throwing 15 pitches from 60-feet on flat ground. He will be re-evaluated on Monday with the hopes of throwing off a mound next week. Dotel is on the DL with a strained left oblique. ... 1B Ross Gload's pinch-hit homer in the eighth inning on Friday was the Royals' first since June 27 of last year, when Matt Stairs hit one against Cincinnati. It was Gload's first pinch-hit homer since May 17, 2004 when he was with the White Sox. ... RHP Brian Bannister will make his second start on Sunday since being called up from Triple-A. Bannister pitched 4 1-3 innings in his Royals' debut on Tuesday against the White Sox.
SEATTLE: Manager Mike Hargrove said injured RHP Felix Hernandez felt good after Friday's 35-pitch bullpen session. Hernandez will throw in the bullpen again sometime in the next couple of days. ... RHP J.J. Putz was as surprised as anyone to see pitching coach Rafael Chaves and trainer Rick Griffin on their way to the mound in the ninth inning on Friday night. Putz had allowed a walk and hit a batter to start the ninth, and his velocity was down leading to concern that Putz was injured. Actually, he was fine, and once his arm loosened up, retired the final three batters for his third save. ``I just couldn't get loose until like the third hitter,'' Putz said. ... All of Putz's saves have been at least 1 1-3 innings, just the second time in his career he's had three straight saves pitching more than an inning.
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NATIONAL LEAGUE
Cubs-Cardinals
CHICAGO: Chicago used a different batting order for the 13th straight game. The Cubs have not used the same lineup (No. 1-8 hitters) for two straight games since April 13-14 against Cincinnati. ... With a win Sunday, the Cubs could complete their first sweep of the Cardinals in St. Louis since June 10-12, 1988. ... Derrek Lee, who went 2-for-4 Saturday, has reached base safely in his first 23 games. He is hitting .391. ... Jason Marquis, who went 14-16 for St. Louis last year, received his World Series ring before the game.
ST. LOUIS: Chris Duncan had his seven-game hitting streak snapped. ... The Cardinals are 3-9 at home and have been outscored 64-36 at Busch Stadium. ... Adam Wainwright is not anxious to see the Cubs again. Wainwright gave up 13 runs and 19 hits in 9 2/3 innings in two starts against the Cubs this week. ... Cardinals outfielder Juan Encarnacion went 1-for-4 Friday in Springfield (AA) as he continues his rehab assignment. Encarnacion is 2-for-17 in four starts while rehabbing from a wrist injury.
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Reds-Pirates
CINCINNATI: The Reds made a move to improve their shaky bullpen, calling up RHP Brad Salmon from Triple-A Louisville to replace LHP Rheal Cormier (9.00 ERA in six games). Salmon was 2-1 with a 2.16 ERA and two saves in eight games for the Bats. ... Aaron Harang takes a 9-3 career record against the Pirates, a 4.40 ERA and three consecutive victories against them into Sunday's start in Pittsburgh. The right-hander is 4-1 against Pittsburgh the last two seasons, including a 9-3 decision in Cincinnati on April 7. Harang is 3-0 overall this season and 1-0 away from home, a year after leading the NL with nine road victories last year.
ce for their first winning April since they were 14-10 in 2002, Lloyd McClendon's second season as their manager. They were 7-19 last season.
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Brewers-Astros
MILWAUKEE: RHP Ben Sheets threw in the bullpen on Saturday and manager Ned Yost said the Brewers' ace is close to being ready for his next scheduled start on Tuesday. Sheets left Wednesday's game against the Chicago Cubs after three innings because of a strained right groin. Yost said Sheets felt fine during his brief session on Saturday, but added that Sheets would be re-evaluated again on Sunday. ``We will take zero chance with this,'' Yost said. ``If he feels anything in the next day or two, we're going to probably skip him. As of right now, he feels fine.'' ... The Brewers came into Saturday's game with seven road wins. Milwaukee didn't earn its seventh road victory until May 24 last season.
e.'' ... Manager Phil Garner shuffled his lineup, trying to generate more runs. Pence batted sixth, Mark Loretta replaced Morgan Ensberg at third base and Luke Scott replaced Jason Lane in right field. The Astros came into the game hitting .240, fourth-worst in the NL. Garner said the team is trying too hard to get hits and that's making matters worse. ``Nobody wants to not deliver when they have the chance,'' Garner said. ``That's why I don't yell and scream at them. They're all just as much about winning as I am.''
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Mets-Nationals
NEW YORK: Twelve Mets players, manager Willie Randolph and some coaches visited Walter Reed Army Medical Center before Saturday's game. ``It's rough, man. You see those kids, and they're young kids - your life changed forever like that with no limbs,'' Randolph said. ``That slaps you in the face, you know.'' ... OF Shawn Green, IF-OF David Newhan, LHP Scott Schoeneweis and RHP Aaron Sele took a tour of the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum before Friday's series opener. ... Randolph was asked about his decision Friday to leave LHP Oliver Perez in to bat in the sixth inning with the bases loaded, one out, and the Mets trailing 3-2. ``I wanted to show him that I appreciated him and tried to get him a win,'' Randolph said.
WASHINGTON: The Nationals were expected to bring LHP Ray King (left shoulder tendinitis) off the 15-day disabled list after Saturday night's game against the New York Mets. Manager Manny Acta said he would meet with general manager Jim Bowden to decide on a corresponding move; Acta said a pitcher would be taken off the 25-man roster to make room for King. ... C Brian Schneider wasn't in the starting lineup Saturday because of illness. ``He had a fever earlier in the day. He's not feeling well,'' Acta said. Rookie Jesus Flores started in Schneider's place. ... RHP Jason Simontacchi (right groin) probably will have one more minor league rehab start before being ready to join the Nationals, Acta said. Simontacchi reached 92 mph and allowed one run and eight hits in a five-inning start at Triple-A Columbus on Friday.
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Marlins-Phillies
FLORIDA: Miguel Cabrera's solo homer Friday night moved him into sole possession of third place on Florida's all-time RBI list. After momentarily clutching his side during a later at-bat, Cabrera was fine and in the starting lineup. ... Wes Obermueller tries for his first win in three starts over the Phillies on Sunday.
PHILADELPHIA: Slumping NL MVP Ryan Howard wasn't in the starting lineup against left-hander Dontrelle Willis. Aaron Rowand, who entered with a career-best 15-game hitting streak, moved up to the leadoff spot from No. 6 while Jimmy Rollins hit third and Chase Utley was in Howard's cleanup spot. ... Manager Charlie Manuel said Tom Gordon would remain the closer, even though he blew his third save in seven chances Friday night. ... Jamie Moyer, who is 4-0 lifetime against Florida, starts Sunday. ... Rod Barajas hit his first homer for the Phillies off Willis.
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Braves-Rockies
ATLANTA: LHP Chuck James needed only a little time with the training staff to correct a tweaked back he hurt trying to beat out a double play ball on Friday night. ``The back was really out of whack,'' manager Bobby Cox said. ``So they stretched him and they stretched him and he's fine now.'' ... Cox brushed off any concern with closer RHP Bob Wickman blowing a save on Wednesday night in Florida and being unable to finish Friday night's game when he entered with a 9-4 lead. ``He's been absolutely pinpoint perfect except last night,'' Cox said. ``He has been excellent. ... Cox bantered with one-time Brave Vinny Castilla as Castilla, a baseball consultant for Colorado, hit ground balls. ``I love the guy,'' Cox said. ``The guy looks like he can still play.''
COLORADO: 2B Kazuo Matsui (lower back spasms) has begun a regime of swing a bat one handed, playing some light catch and jogging. ``But we still don't have a timetable for him,, manager Clint Hurdle said. ... Despite a string of three poor starts, Hurdle said he was determined to see LHP Jeff Francis through his troubles. ``He's been able to get to get into good counts and then hasn't been able to put hitters away like he has in the past,'' Hurdle said. ``He can't keep the pitch off the barrel of the bat and gotten the ball up in the zone.'' ... SS Troy Tulowitzki hit second in the batting order for the third game. ``Right now he's the best fit for us there,'' Hurdle said.
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