Padres-Devil Rays
SAN DIEGO: 3B Kevin Kouzmanoff left in the fourth inning with a lower back strain after swinging at a pitch. Manager Bud Black said he'll be day to day. ``It's something that we're going to keep an eye on, obviously,'' Black said. ``We'll see how he comes out of it the next 24 hours.'' ... RF Hiram Bocachica (strep throat) was in the starting lineup for the first time since last weekend and went 0-for-4. ... 1B Adrian Gonzalez went 2-for-3, giving him a team-best 19 multihit games.
TAMPA BAY: Manager Joe Maddon said it's ``more than likely'' that CF Elijah Dukes will start Friday night at Colorado. Dukes returned but didn't play Thursday, one day after he left the team for personal reasons. ... A decision on whether RHP Edwin Jackson (0-8, 8.20 ERA in 12 starts) will lose his spot in the rotation could be announced as soon as Friday. RHP Jason Hammel would likely fill the role if Jackson is dropped.
LOS ANGELES: RF Vladimir Guerrero has broken out of his slump with two impressive games. He emerged from an 0-for-14 skid by driving in four runs on Wednesday night. Guerrero drove in three more on Thursday with a bases-loaded single and a sacrifice fly. ... 3B Chone Figgins extended his hitting streak to 13 games, matching his career high. It's the fourth time he has hit in 13 in a row, the first since September 2005. He is batting .466 during the streak. ... C Jose Molina extended his hitting streak to a season-high eight games. ... RHP Bartolo Colon improved to 3-0 in three career starts against Cincinnati.
CINCINNATI: Reds closer Eddie Guardado will take his comeback from reconstructive elbow surgery to Triple-A Louisville. Guardado has made four scoreless rehab appearances for Class A Dayton. He'll pitch for Louisville on Friday and Sunday. Guardado hopes to be back with the Reds by midseason. ... Ken Griffey Jr. hit his 579th homer. He's four away from tying Mark McGwire for seventh place. ... Griffey has 44 homers in interleague play, matching Carlos Delgado for second on the career list. Jim Thome has hit 52. ... CF Josh Hamilton left the game after the fifth inning because he felt dizzy on the hot, sunny afternoon. ... 1B Scott Hatteberg matched his career high with four hits. Hatteberg was only 3-for-27 in June heading into the game.
MILWAUKEE: RHP Chris Capuano went on the 15-day DL with a strained groin Thursday and RHP Yovani Gallardo, from Triple-A Nashville, took his roster spot. ... RHP Chris Spurling, who picked up his first big-league win since 2005 on Wednesday, pitched another scoreless inning against his former team on Thursday. ``This is definitely going to be a confidence-booster,'' the former Tiger said. ... Milwaukee's 6-5 victory gives that NL Central-leading Brewers exactly one more run than their opponents this season. ... OF Corey Hart, who had a solo homer and two RBIs, is hitting .356 with hits in 14 of his last 16 games.
DETROIT: Backup C Vance Wilson had season-ending elbow surgery Wednesday and could be sidelined well into next season with a recovery that is expected to last nine months to a year. Mike Rabelo, who began the season with one game of major league experience, is hitting .283 in 18 games as Rodriguez's backup. ... CF Curtis Granderson went 0-for-4 with a walk, ending a career-high 13-game hitting streak. ... DH Gary Sheffield was 3-for-4 and is hitting .346 with 10 doubles, 16 homers and 39 RBIs over his last 46 games. ... OF Magglio Ordonez was 2-for-4 and leads the majors with a .367 batting average.
ARIZONA: SS Stephen Drew's streak of 34 games without an error ended when he misplayed Jorge Posada's grounder in the fifth inning. Drew had the longest active string among NL shortstops. ... Arizona has lost 21 of its last 28 interleague games. The Diamondbacks play at Baltimore this weekend.
NEW YORK: Alex Rodriguez started at DH for only the 10th time in his career and the first time since last Aug. 20. It was unfamiliar territory - when he was stranded to end the eighth, the All-Star third baseman briefly lingered on the field, waiting for a teammate to bring him his glove. ... Andy Pettitte has walked one batter in each of his last seven starts. He leads AL left-handers with a 2.93 ERA. ... The Yankees are a major league-best 110-73 in interleague play. ... The Yankees will pay tribute to Rutgers' recent sports success before Friday night's game. Coach Vivian Stringer and members of the women's basketball team will attend and football coach Greg Schiano will throw out the ceremonial first pitch.
-inning win over Houston.
HOUSTON: Houston placed shortstop Adam Everett on the 15-day disabled list with a fractured right leg after the game Thursday. The team recalled Eric Bruntlett from Triple-A Round Rock to take his spot on the roster. Bruntlett was named Round Rock's offensive player of the month for May after hitting .362 with nine RBIs, six doubles and two triples. Manager Phil Garner said Bruntlett and Mark Loretta will split time at shortstop while Everett is out. Everett is expected to miss four-to-eight weeks. ... With Thursday's loss to Oakland, the Astros have won just two of their last 10 series since May 15. ... Carlos Lee had an RBI on Thursday to push his NL-leading total to 54. ... Craig Biggio got his first pinch hit of the season with a single in the 10th inning on Thursday for his 2,985th career hit. ... Mike Lamb was 3-for-5 with two RBIs Thursday for his sixth multi-hit game of the season
od for second-best in baseball. ... Manager Mike Hargrove had a laugh before the game talking about some of the unique aspects of Wrigley Field. ``The best I ever saw was when Ichiro caught a ball (on Tuesday),'' Hargrove said. ``He turned around and threw it in the stands and they threw it back at him.''
CHICAGO: Daryle Ward, on the DL with a strained hip, will start a rehab assignment at Triple-A Iowa and is expected to be activated next week. ... C Michael Barrett was out of the starting lineup for a second straight game but is scheduled to return Friday against the Padres. Barrett won't catch Saturday's game when Carlos Zambrano starts. Barrett hasn't caught Zambrano in three starts since their fight in the dugout and clubhouse. Manager Lou Piniella said it was too early to say if backup catcher Koyie Hill would get more playing time. Hill had a double, walk and sacrifice Thursday and the Cubs are 5-1 in games he's started. ... Rookie reliever Clay Rapada made his major league debut and retired the only batter he faced.
Rockies-Red Sox
risp's throw toward the infield turned into a loose ball. They all scored on Garrett Atkins' grand slam anyway. ... CF Willy Taveras got a bit of a rest by serving as designated hitter. Ryan Spilborghs made his fifth start of the season in center.
BOSTON: LF Manny Ramirez, who usually wears his pant legs down to his shoes, showed a lot of the red sock. ... J.D. Drew was bumped from fifth to leadoff in the hopes of sparking some offense. The Red Sox signed 10 picks from last week's draft: RHP Adam Mills, SS Kenneth Roque, C Daniel Miliano, LHP William Latimer, 3B Deshaun Brooks, C Will Vazquez, LHP Daniel Buller, RHP Anthony Bajoczky, SS Emmanuel Solano and C Peter Gilardo.
e mentality of the National League.'' ... Washington is leaning toward giving more at bats at third base to 3B Ramon Vazquez than to 3B Travis Metcalf for the immediate future with 3B Hank Blalock on the disabled list.
PITTSBURGH: Manager Jim Tracy said that RHP Shawn Chacon - whom Tracy announced Thursday would lose his spot in the rotation in favor of Triple-A call-up John Van Benschoten - would be one of the team's primary set-up men for closer RHP Matt Capps. With RHP Salomon Torres on the disabled list and the bullpen as a whole struggling, Chacon is a good option to solidify the seventh- and eighth-inning roles. ``With his versatility and what he showed us earlier in the season, it makes sense,'' Tracy said. ``He's a guy who has been throwing the ball very well for us since the season started.'' ... LHP Damaso Marte is another late-inning option. The veteran has a 1.23 ERA in 29 games, and left-handers are batting just .111 against him. ... Tracy said that representatives for Capps have been in contact with Major League Baseball since his appeal hearing of his four-game suspension for throwing at the Brewers' Prince Fielder. His hearing was last Friday in New York and no official word has come from the league.
CLEVELAND: The Indians recalled LHP Jason Stanford from Triple-A Buffalo in time for him to start Thursday, and optioned Matt Miller to Double-A Akron. ... Cleveland is 21-8 at home, the second-best mark in the majors, and starts a stretch Friday of playing 19 of its next 25 games at Jacobs Field. ... LHP C.C. Sabathia (9-1) gets the start Friday against the Atlanta Braves, a team he's never faced. ... Cleveland's batting average as a team has gone from .260 to .273 over the last 29 games.
FLORIDA: RHP Josh Johnson, who hasn't pitched in the majors this season because of forearm discomfort, will rejoin the Marlins in Kansas City on Friday and is scheduled to throw a bullpen session. He could be back in Florida's rotation by early next week. ... RHP Sergio Mitre takes a streak of 23 2-3 consecutive innings without allowing an earned run into Friday's start at the Royals. ... SS Hanley Ramirez's first-inning single extended his interleague hitting streak to 12 games.
the game, but Acta said the pitcher was nowhere near being ready to start a rehab assignment.
BALTIMORE: Jay Payton joined the 1,000-hit club Wednesday, but downplayed the accomplishment after having 24 hours to reflect on the feat. ``It either means you're old, or you're young and really, really good,'' the 34-year-old outfielder said. ``Since I'm not young and really, really good, I guess that just means I'm old.'' ... CF Corey Patterson was back on the bench Thursday after going 1-for-5 Wednesday, only his second start since June 5. He is mired in a 4-for-37 skid that has dropped his batting average to .208. ... Baltimore's home game against Boston on Aug. 11 has been moved from 7:05 p.m. to 3:55 p.m. to accommodate FOX-TV.
he 1991 World Series, the Braves will travel to Cleveland for a repeat of the 1995 Fall Classic against the Indians.
MINNESOTA: Joe Mauer caught his third straight game Thursday and has been behind the plate for five of Minnesota's six games since he came off the disabled list following a month-long absence because of a strained quadriceps. Manager Ron Gardenhire said he'd probably use Mauer as the DH on Friday and Sunday. ... LF Jason Kubel returned to the lineup Thursday after sitting out three games because of a sprained knee. The Twins want him to be more aggressive early in the count and produce consistently enough to hold down the sixth spot in the batting order. ... RHP Carlos Silva said his newborn son, Justin, was not named for Twins 1B and reigning AL MVP Justin Morneau. His wife, Maria, has always liked the name. ``The only thing I say to her is, 'Don't name it Carlos, because there are too many Carloses in the world,''' Silva said.
ST. LOUIS: When the Cardinals are in Oakland for a three-game series this weekend, manager Tony La Russa will get to sleep in his own bed. La Russa managed the A's from 1986-95 and still makes his home there. He's not expecting to be booed by A's fans. ``I haven't done anything to them. Why should they boo me?'' he asked. ... INF David Eckstein was out of the lineup Thursday after leaving Wednesday's game with tightness in his lower back. The Cardinals listed him as day-to-day. ... The return of outfielder Juan Encarnacion has given the offense a big boost. He missed the first month and a half while recovering from offseason wrist surgery, but he had two hits and two RBIs in Wednesday night's win and stretched his hitting streak to 13 games, six short of his career-best 19-game streak.
KANSAS CITY: 2B Mark Grudzielanek will undergo surgery Friday on the same knee that was operated on in March. He and RHP Brandon Duckworth were placed on the DL Thursday and OF Shane Costa and LHP Neal Musser were recalled from Triple-A Omaha. Costa had just been sent to the Triple-A team the day before. The Royals are not sure how long they'll be without Grudzielanek, who is one of the team leaders and drove in seven runs over the weekend against Philadelphia. ... Twenty-six of the 52 players KC drafted this month have agreed to terms, including their No. 2 pick Clayton Mortensen, a pitcher from Gonzaga University.

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