Notes from Friday's games Print
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Friday, 20 July 2007 17:01
MLB Headline News

 AMERICAN LEAGUE
White Sox-Red Sox
CHICAGO: The White Sox got their 18th comeback win of the year with a 4-2 victory over Boston on Thursday night. Only four teams have fewer this season. ... When RHP Jose Contreras pitched for the New York Yankees, he was 0-5 with a 13.95 ERA in nine games, four of them starts, against the Red Sox. On Friday night, he took a 4-0 record and a 3.51 ERA into the game in five starts with Chicago against Boston. ... SS Juan Uribe was 2-for-29 before leading off the third inning with a single and scoring on Jim Thome's three-run homer. ... Thome's homer was Chicago's 31st in 23 games.
-27 in his last eight. ... Josh Beckett allowed just his seventh homer of the year on Jim Thome's shot to center. Beckett gave up 36 last season, more than twice his previous career high. ... Julio Lugo extended his hitting streak to 10 games with an infield single in the third.
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Royals-Tigers
DETROIT: As part of their annual Negro Leagues weekend, the Tigers placed a plaque honoring Hall of Fame outfielder Turkey Stearnes near the entrance of Comerica Park. The power-hitting left fielder, who spent much of his career with the Detroit Stars, was elected to the Hall of Fame in 2001. ... C Ivan Rodriguez came into the weekend series with 213 career hits and 49 doubles against the Royals, both the most by any active player. ... LHP Kenny Rogers needed one pickoff to tie Mark Langston's record of 91. The statistic has only been kept since 1974, but Langston and Rogers are the only pitchers with more than 79.
gers starter Kenny Rogers to .667 (8-for-12). Emil Brown, on the other hand, grounded out to start the second, dropping his average against Rogers to .100 (2-for-20).
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Devil Rays-Yankees
TAMPA BAY: The Devil Rays are carrying nine relievers in preparation for Saturday's doubleheader. ... Friday's game at New York was the opener of a seven-game trip and the start of a stretch during which Tampa Bay will play 17 of 26 on the road. The Devil Rays closed out the first half with a 1-9 trip and had won just three of their last 13 road games before Friday. They have made 26 trips to the Bronx and won just three series.
th a walk Thursday and was hitless in his last 17 at-bats heading into Friday's game. Torre said he hopes Cabrera will be ready for Saturday's doubleheader. ... LHP Kei Igawa and RHP Matt DeSalvo will start in the day-night doubleheader against the Devil Rays. With RHPs Jeff Karstens (right elbow) and Phil Hughes (left hamstring) on their way back, Torre acknowledged it's a crucial start for the struggling Igawa.
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Mariners-Blue Jays
SEATTLE: Manager John McLaren said RHP Felix Hernandez will remain on regular rest despite an off day Thursday, putting him in line to start Sunday's series finale against Toronto's Roy Halladay. ... Seattle relievers had allowed a major league-low 17 home runs. ... RHP J.J. Putz had not allowed a run in his past 21 innings, the longest current streak in the major leagues. ... Seattle entered with a 17-8 record against the AL East, its best record against any division.
h in setup situations in the seventh or eighth inning. ... The Blue Jays had played an AL-high 34 one-run games, going 18-16.
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Angels-Twins
LOS ANGELES: Angels manager Mike Scioscia shuffled his struggling lineup, dropping rookie OF Reggie Willits from the leadoff spot to No. 9 in the order. SS Orlando Cabrera, also in a slump, moved from third to second, and All-Star Vladimir Guerrero moved from fourth to third. ``This really is just a reflection of trying to get Reggie back on track and let him be relaxed down there,'' Scioscia said. ... C Mike Napoli, out since July 1 with a sprained ankle, returned to the lineup. Scioscia said he'll work him back in slowly and probably give Napoli a rest on Saturday. With LHP Joe Saunders scheduled to be called up from Triple-A Salt Lake to replace RHP Ervin Santana in the rotation for Sunday's game, the Angels are planning to send C Jeff Mathis back to the minors and keep Jose Molina as Napoli's only backup. ... 2B Howie Kendrick (broken finger) will have another X-ray this weekend and could start on-field activities next week. Also, Scioscia said RHP Chris Resop (triceps tendinitis) threw off a mound and could start a rehab assignment next week.
MINNESOTA: RF Michael Cuddyer (sprained thumb) was put on the DL and the Twins called up OF Darnell McDonald from the minors. Acquired last month from Washington for RHP Levale Speigner, McDonald was thrust into the lineup in the No. 7 spot. McDonald appeared in 17 games with Baltimore in 2004, his only prior major league experience. The 28-year-old will share time with Garrett Jones, Lew Ford and Jason Tyner in RF while Cuddyer is out for the next two weeks. ... LHP Glen Perkins (shoulder strain) and the Twins were encouraged by a recent exam that determined he doesn't need surgery - only more rehab for the injury he aggravated last week. Perkins, who has been out since May 22, will return to the team's minor league complex in Florida next week. ... LF Rondell White (calf and hamstring strains) is fully healthy and will begin his second minor league rehab assignment this weekend - with a possible return to the Twins next week.
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Indians-Rangers
is side), out since June 22, played catch from 75 feet in Cleveland. He will progress to 90 and 120 feet, then throw a bullpen session before going on a rehab assignment.
TEXAS: RHP Vicente Padilla will have another bullpen session Saturday as he rehabs from the right triceps inflammation that landed him on the 15-day DL on June 25. Padilla hadn't thrown off a mound since a minor league start for Double-A Frisco on July 12. If all goes well this weekend, Padilla will have a two-inning start for Frisco on Tuesday. ``If we can get him through a couple of starts, we can bump the pitch count up,'' pitching coach Mark Connor said. ``We want him to start at 30-35 pitches.'' Padilla is about 10 days away from rejoining the rotation. ... 2B Ian Kinsler is running for the first time since going on the 15-day DL on July 2 with a stress fracture in his left foot. Kinsler, who has been hitting for about a week, has shed the walking boot he was wearing. ``The foot feels fine but it's the first time I've run in three weeks so the legs need a couple of days to catch up,'' Kinsler said.
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Orioles-Athletics
BALTIMORE: RHP Steve Trachsel was activated from the 15-day disabled list and will start on Saturday. ... RHP Jeremy Guthrie pitches Sunday to keep him on his regular turn. ... The Orioles entered play with a 7-14 mark against the AL West, and are 29-26 against the rest of the AL. ... OF Jay Payton has yet to hit a home run against the A's, his former team. Oakland is just one of two teams, with the Cincinnati Reds, against whom Payton has not gone deep. ... DH Jay Gibbons' .187 average and 13 RBIs against the A's are his lowest against any AL team.
OAKLAND: DH Mike Piazza, who was reinstated from the 15-day disabled list and batted cleanup, was working out as a catcher before beginning his rehab assignment last week. In the six games in which he appeared with Triple-A Sacramento and Class-A Stockton, though, he appeared only as a DH. Manager Bob Geren said there's a possibility Piazza could still catch this season, although that's highly unlikely now that C Kurt Suzuki has established himself and the A's obtained C Rob Bowen from the Chicago Cubs. ... RHP Dan Haren, Saturday's starter, leads the AL in ERA but has allowed nine earned runs over his past 13 2-3 innings. ... 3B Eric Chavez was out of the lineup for the fourth straight game with tightness in his lower back.
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NATIONAL LEAGUE
Diamondbacks-Cubs
ARIZONA: INF Chad Tracy was back in the starting lineup Friday after missing two games with tendinitis in his right knee. ``He's feeling considerably better today,'' manager Bob Melvin said. The left-handed Tracy will likely be on the bench for one or both of the next two games against the Cubs with lefties Rich Hill and Sean Marshall on the mound. ... LHP Randy Johnson (sore back) threw a bullpen session Friday in Arizona. ... OF Eric Byrnes is a free agent after this season and is unlikely to sign a contract extension. Despite the uncertainty surrounding his future, Melvin doesn't expect it to bother Byrnes. ``I certainly wouldn't think that it would affect him going forward,'' Melvin said. ``If he is out there at the end of the year, obviously he'd like to put up some numbers to where he can command what he wants to command.'' Byrnes is batting .309 with 14 homers, 51 RBIs and 24 stolen bases. ... Eleven of Chris Young's 15 homers this season have come on the road.
Cubs outfielder since Sammy Sosa had 14 in 1998. ... Scott Moore filled in at first Friday after playing in a game with Triple-A Iowa on Thursday night when he homered. He was 0-for-4 Friday but handled the position well. ... Mike Fontenot was moved into the No. 3 spot in the order with Derrek Lee, Cliff Floyd and Daryle Ward all unavailable. The 5-foot-8 Fontenot went 2-for-3 with three runs scored and two stolen bases. He now has four steals in his career. Fontenot, who is hitting .336, said he'd batted third on occasion in the minors.
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Astros-Pirates
ASTROS: Houston is 4-14-1 in its 19 road series this season, including a three-game sweep in Pittsburgh from April 24-26. Wandy Rodriguez, who starts Saturday night in Pittsburgh, is 1-6 with a 7.45 in nine road starts this season. ... Going into the weekend, Roy Oswalt's 106 victories since 2001 were the most of any pitcher in the majors and one better than Randy Johnson's 105. During that span, the Pirates' leader was Josh Fogg (39 victories). The Pirates' current career wins leader is a reliever, Salomon Torres (24).
PIRATES: The Pirates will retire Hall of Fame OF Paul Waner's No. 11 on Saturday night, 62 years after he played his final major league game and 42 years after he died. His .340 career average remains the highest by a player in club history, and he had eight seasons of 200 or more hits. ... RHP John Van Benschoten (0-4, 8.17 ERA) will be skipped over his scheduled start Sunday against Houston with LHP Shane Youman (2-1) taking his place. Van Benschoten won't start again until Friday in Philadelphia so he can work on flaws in his delivery the Pirates believe they have discovered. Van Benschoten gave up 14 runs and 13 hits in a combined 4 2-3 innings in his last two starts, against the Rockies and Cubs. ... INF Don Kelly was designated for assignment for the second time this season.
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Reds-Marlins
CINCINNATI: LHP Eddie Guardado threw 30 pitches in batting practice and 14 in the bullpen Friday. He has been on the disabled list all season following reconstructive elbow surgery last September. ``I feel good,'' Guardado said. ``I'm just anxious to get out there.'' ... LHP Bill Bray (left shoulder tendinitis) returned from a rehabilitation assignment, was reinstated from the 15-day disabled list and was optioned to Triple-A Louisville. ... RHP Homer Bailey's strained right groin was diagnosed as moderate, and he'll be examined again in two weeks. He went on the disabled list Thursday with Triple-A Louisville. ... 1B Jeff Conine was honored before Friday's game at Florida for his part on the Marlins' 1997 World Series championship team.
FLORIDA: RHP Wes Obermueller was outrighted to Triple-A Albuquerque. ... RHP Matt Lindstrom (back spasms) was feeling better Friday but was unavailable to pitch for the second night in a row. ... The Marlins play at San Francisco next weekend, and manager Fredi Gonzalez is already fielding questions about whether they'll pitch to Barry Bonds. ``You've got to play the game like you normally play it,'' Gonzalez said. ``If he comes up where you don't want him to beat you, then you pitch around him, like any other big hitters.''
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Rockies-Nationals
COLORADO: RHP Ramon Ramirez was recalled from Triple-A Colorado Springs. He was 2-0 with a 2.49 ERA in 20 games with the Sky Sox. He began the season with Colorado and went 2-1 with a 10.22 ERA in 15 games. He appeared in 61 games with the Rockies in 2006. Manager Clint Hurdle is looking for Ramirez to be able to pitch more than an inning per game. ``He's pitched multiple innings a handful of times at Triple-A. He'll give us that option,'' Hurdle said. After Thursday's game, the Rockies designated LHP Tom Martin for assignment. ``He wasn't getting the job done,'' Hurdle said. ... RHP Jason Hirsh, on the 15-day disabled list since July 3 with a sprained left ankle, will pitch for Colorado Springs on Monday. It will be his second rehabilitation start.
WASHINGTON: 1B Dmitri Young was removed from the starting lineup before Friday's game because of a bruised left heel. Young is considered day-to-day and was available to pinch hit Friday. He injured his heel while running out a groundball during Washington's series against Houston earlier in the week. ``It's a precautionary measure, that's all,'' general manager Jim Bowden said. ``If we were in a playoff race right now, he'd be out there playing.'' ... RHP Jason Simontacchi (6-7, 6.37 ERA) was placed on the 15-day DL with tendinitis in his right elbow. The move was retroactive to July 16. RHP Chris Booker is scheduled to be called up from Triple-A Columbus on Saturday. Booker was 1-4 with 24 saves and a 3.83 ERA with Columbus.
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Cardinals-Braves
ek. ``We were expecting some help and if the help is not there, something has to happen,'' La Russa of losing his ace. ``What we need to guard against is getting discouraged. If ever a rotation needed a leader, this one did - does.'' ... La Russa said Scott Spiezio's left index finger is markedly improved'' and added that the INF-OF could come off the DL by next weekend. The Cardinals begin a three-game series with the NL Central-leading Milwaukee Brewers. ... Even though the Cubs have the NL's worst record against left-handers, Mike Maroth's recent struggles could keep him out of the rotation. La Russa described Maroth, who's 0-3 with an 11.00 ERA and seven homers allowed in his last four starts, as being ``in a funk right now.'' ... The bullpen has a 7-2 record with a 2.33 ERA in the last 26 games, striking out 80 and walking 27 over a span of 92 2-3 innings.
t started him on June 15, and Franco had been at bat just five times since. ... RHP Tim Hudson hit 92 mph a few times with his fastball in the 10-1 victory on Thursday. Cox credited the rise in velocity to extra rest Hudson had during the All-Star break and an additional day off this week when John Smoltz was activated from the DL. Hudson usually tops out at 88-89 mph. ... Before striking out and hitting into a fielder's choice, CF Andruw Jones was leading the majors in July with 19 RBIs and 18 runs scored. In his last 15 games, Jones had a .328 average (19-for-58) with nine walks and 10 strikeouts.
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Giants-Brewers
SAN FRANCISCO: Pitching coach Dave Righetti is not with the team for personal reasons. Bert Bradley, the team's coordinator of minor league pitching, replaced Righetti for the weekend series. ... C Bengie Molina and INF Ray Durham had a scheduled night off.
y disabled list, possibly the middle of next week, Graffanino will return to infield. Yost wants Graffanino in the lineup because he came into Friday night's game batting .342 with seven home runs and 16 RBIs over the last 33 games.
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Mets-Dodgers
NEW YORK: The ESPN miniseries ``The Bronx is Burning'' has received mixed reviews from Mets manager Willie Randolph, who was the Yankees second baseman that season when they won the World Series despite a tumultuous first year with Reggie Jackson. ``I saw one scene in the film where Reggie was asking me a question and I was ignoring him. But that didn't happen. I was one of the few guys on the team that liked him, actually,'' Randolph said. ``Reggie and I got along real well, as a matter of fact. I've always liked John Turturro as an actor and I thought he did a pretty good job (as manager Billy Martin). He looked a little bit like Billy - but I think they went way overboard with the ears. I saw once quick glimpse of the guy who played me, and I was disappointed he wasn't better looking. If you asked my wife, it would have been Denzel Washington. I also thought they also portrayed Mickey (Rivers) in a real different way, too. He wasn't as gregarious as they made him out to be.''
LOS ANGELES: Even though the NHL's New York Islanders have invited former coach Al Arbour to coach one more game next November and make it an even 1,500, ex-Dodgers manager Tommy Lasorda has no desire to try and get one more victory for 1,600 - not even if Brad Penny (11-1) starts. ``I'm not going to manage anymore. I'm not going to be in the dugout anymore. I've had it,'' Lasorda said with a laugh. ``That 1,599 is just as good as 1,600 for me. What's the difference? I was pretty fortunate to be able to do that for 20 years. Besides, I should have been credited with two of those victories when I managed the last four games for (Walter) Alston (in 1976). So I've really got 1,601.'' ... The back-to-back home runs RHP Rudy Seanez gave up to the Mets' Carlos Delgado and Ramon Castro on Thursday night marked the second time in three days that it's happened to him. Aaron Rowand and Pat Burrell of the Phillies victimized him on Tuesday night. Prior to that, Seanez had allowed only three homers this season in 42 1-3 innings - and the Dodgers had allowed back-to-back homers only twice in their first 92 games. ``We've taxed the bullpen. And if you look at it, we've overused him,'' pitching coach Rick Honeycutt said. ``But Rudy's done a tremendous job for us all year. When he's been rested, he's been able to come in and do the job.''
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Phillies-Padres
PHILADELPHIA: Jamie Moyer and David Wells will have a combined age of 88 years, 307 days when they face each other Saturday night, the second-oldest pitching matchup in history. The oldest was Don Sutton against Phil Niekro on June 8, 1987, when their combined age was 90 years, 135 days.
SAN DIEGO: Manager Bud Black said it's ``more than likely'' that slumping 2B Marcus Giles will be back in the lineup on Saturday night against the Phillies following a three-game benching. Giles has hit just .191 since May 7 and his overall average has dipped to .237. ``We're looking for positive signs,'' Black said. When Giles does return, he'll be dropped lower than the No. 2 spot he's occupied since June 29, when his older brother, Brian, took over in the leadoff spot.
 

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