Twins-Blue Jays
MINNESOTA: The Twins demoted OF Darnell McDonald to Triple-A Rochester after Wednesday's game and are expected to promote 3B Brian Buscher before Friday's game at Cleveland. Buscher, 26, was batting .319 with six home runs and 20 RBIs in 34 games at Rochester. ... 1B Justin Morneau picked up his 86th RBI with a fourth-inning single. Morneau has 86 RBIs, second most in the major leagues behind Alex Rodriguez (100). ... LHP Dennys Reyes allowed two earned runs Wednesday, the first time he has given up an earned run in 18 appearances since coming off the disabled list June 14.
2.10 ERA in the team's past seven games. ... Toronto is 24-10 at home since May 11, the best home winning percentage in the major leagues.
Red Sox-Indians
BOSTON: The Red Sox entered play Wednesday with a .277 team average, fifth in the AL. Manager Terry Francona said he likes the job Dave Magadan is doing in his first year as Red Sox hitting coach. ``I'd love to have everybody hitting .300 with 30 homers,'' Francona said. ``But I like how Mags works well with and helps every hitter on the team. He's very knowledgeable and breaks things down where each guy understands what he's talking about.'' ... Francona said he intends to try and rest his regulars at various intervals in the next few weeks, starting with 3B Mike Lowell and SS Julio Lugo. ... RHP Brendan Donnelly, sidelined since June 17 with a strained right forearm, played catch from 90 feet as he continues his recovery.
ve so many Boston fans chanting ``Youuk'' when (Kevin) Youkilis comes up. ... That's not Cleveland.'' ... LHP Aaron Fultz threw a bullpen session before Wednesday's game, moving him closer to returning from a strained muscle in his rib cage. Fultz has been on the disabled list since June 27.
Devil Rays-Orioles
TAMPA BAY: The Devil Rays expect two players back on the roster by Friday, in time for their weekend series with Boston. LHP Casey Fossum will rejoin the team after his wife, Kim, gave birth to their third child in Bradenton. He had left the team prior to the series with Baltimore. C Josh Paul (left elbow strain) also is expected to come off the disabled list after he finishes his rehab assignment with Double-A Montgomery. ... Manager Joe Maddon said SS Brendan Harris will get a rest Thursday after starting 84 of the last 89 games. Maddon said Josh Wilson will start in his place.
y disabled list on Friday. ... The Orioles donated $1 million to the Cal Ripken Sr. Foundation Tuesday night during the celebration that sent Cal Ripken Jr. on his way to the Hall of Fame.
NEW YORK: RHP Scott Proctor rejoined the Yankees on Wednesday, after taking two days off for the birth of his son, Cooper. ... Manager Joe Torre said RHP Phil Hughes, coming back from hamstring and ankle injuries, would likely make one more rehab start for Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre before he is ready to return to the club. ... DH Jason Giambi, sidelined since May 30 with torn tissue in his left foot, is set to start a minor league rehab assignment Friday night with Class-A Tampa and hopes to rejoin the team next week. ... 2B Robinson Cano's three walks in Tuesday's 9-4 victory were a career high - and one more than he had in all of May. ... Torre said he would not decide on a pitcher for Friday's resumption of a suspended game at Baltimore until the Yankees had finished batting. New York was leading 8-6 in the top of the eighth when the game was halted by rain on June 28.
KANSAS CITY: The Royals released RHP Scott Elarton on Wednesday, one day after bringing him off the disabled list to start against the Yankees. Elarton gave up seven runs on six hits in just 1 2-3 innings. The Royals made no immediate move to fill Elarton's roster spot, but manager Buddy Bell said the team expected to call up a relief pitcher. ... RHP Leo Nunez would likely be called up from Triple-A Omaha to take Elarton's scheduled start Sunday against Texas, Bell said. ... Wednesday night marked the 17th anniversary of the last time a Kansas City player hit for the cycle. Hall of Fame 3B George Brett, now a team vice president, did it on July 25, 1990, at Toronto. Derryl Cousins, the plate umpire for Wednesday night's game, was the first base umpire when Brett accomplished the feat.
Tigers-White Sox
Saturday night and had been feeling sore for a few days and unable to throw. ... C Ivan Rodriguez and 2B Polanco didn't start Wednesday and SS Carlos Guillen was supposed to sit Thursday, all because of minor soreness.
CHICAGO: White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen chuckled at the most recent trade rumor surrounding his underachieving club: Paul Konerko to the Los Angeles Angels. ``I just laugh,'' Guillen said. ``He should just laugh. If the Angels want to trade for somebody, I'll be happy. Kenny will be asking for a lot of people and they'll say no.'' Guillen said he doesn't foresee any trades as the non-waiver deadline approaches on July 31. ``Right now, I feel like nothing is going to happen,'' he said. ``I don't know what the deal is. I don't know if people are waiting for the last second. But right now any player for the White Sox that think they're going to get traded, they're not going to get traded. Not right now. There's nothing out there.'' ... Backup catcher Toby Hall was whacked in the back of the neck Tuesday night by Carlos Guillen's backswing and had to leave the game, but Hall started Wednesday.
SEATTLE: DH Jose Vidro dropped to fifth in the batting order for the first time Wednesday night. Manager John McLaren said the move was to give Vidro, the Mariners' most consistent hitter other than Ichiro Suzuki, more opportunities to drive in runs and make an impact. ... The Mariners weren't pulling their hair out in the clubhouse Wednesday after five straight losses. But they were cutting it. 3B Adrian Beltre became the barber, cutting the hair of just about everybody in the Mariners' traveling party, from players to coaches and even a PR guy. Ben Broussard got a mohawk, Vidro had a buzz cut and Richie Sexson's long locks were much shorter.
TEXAS: Jerry Hairston saw a chiropractor Wednesday, but was still out with a stiff back. He was pulled out midway through the first game of Tuesday's doubleheader because he couldn't get loose. Manager Ron Washington kept him out of the lineup Wednesday, hoping that and a travel day Thursday would have Hairston ready to play in a weekend series at Kansas City. ... Washington originally wasn't planning to play rookie 3B Travis Metcalf on Wednesday. He changed his mind after Metcalf had a double in Game 1 on Tuesday, then went 4-for-4 with the game-winning RBI double in the nightcap. ``After last night, I can't take him out of the lineup now,'' Washington said.
OAKLAND: The fan who hit DH Mike Piazza in the on-deck circle with a thrown water bottle on Wednesday was identified as 22-year-old Roland Flores of La Puente, Calif. He was arrested on suspicion of assault and battery and booked at the Anaheim Detention Facility, according to Anaheim police spokesman Rick Martinez. Formal charges could be filed as soon as Thursday. ``It was a gutless move,'' said Piazza, who homered twice during the series with the Angels. ``I mean, in this day and age, you shouldn't be surprised. But there's just no excuse for that. It's absolutely ridiculous. Hopefully, he'll spend the night in jail.'' ... Injury-jinxed SS Bobby Crosby was placed on the 15-day disabled list with a broken left hand. He was hit by a fastball from Justin Speier in the eighth inning of Oakland's 4-3 victory Tuesday night. Crosby, the 2004 AL Rookie of the Year, is on the DL for the fifth time in the past three seasons. ... The Athletics have used the DL 18 times this season - the most since 1997, when they used it 21 times. ... Donnie Murphy, recalled from Triple-A Sacramento to replace Crosby on the 25-man roster, started at shortstop and was 1-for-3 with an RBI double and an error.
and won the Home Run Derby during the All-Star break. ``It didn't mess up his stroke,'' hitting coach Mickey Hatcher said. ``I just think he's going through a period of time right now where he's a little tired, and he's been missing some pitches. Vlad's a guy who loves to play every day and he doesn't want to come out of the lineup. There's times where his back is going to be stiff or his body's going to be stiff, and he's not going to say anything. But we can see him battling through stuff like that sometimes. He's chasing a few more pitches that are probably a lot farther out of the zone than he usually swings at, and you see him taking some pitches that are strikes - which he usually doesn't do. But he's a professional. He knows how to turn it around and I've got all the confidence in the world in him.''
y thing.'' ... OF Mike Cameron and OF Milton Bradley were given the day off. ``Cameron took a scheduled day off while Bradley needed the time off because of some aches and pains,'' Black said.
COLORADO: Manager Clint Hurdle said he plans to give players a night off during the hot summer months. Last week, Hurdle sat 1B Todd Helton and OF Matt Holliday for a game each. He will try to sit 3B Garrett Atkins and 2B Kaz Matsui soon. ... LHP Brian Fuentes (strained back) threw on the side Monday. Hurdle said Fuentes would throw again Wednesday from a deeper distance. ... SS Troy Tulowitzki, who missed Tuesday night's game due to an undisclosed illness, was in uniform Wednesday but did not start. ... INF Jamey Carroll got started at shortstop for the second straight game.
WASHINGTON: RHP Shawn Hill threw 35 pitches in two innings of a simulated game against teammates in Philadelphia. Hill (3-3, 2.70 ERA) has been on the disabled list since May 12 with a left shoulder strain. ``He looked real good. He's ready to go,'' manager Manny Acta said. Hill is expected to throw a bullpen session Friday and make his first rehab start soon after. ... RHP Jason Bergmann, who left Tuesday's game in the third inning with tightness in his left hamstring, will throw on the side Thursday. Acta then will decide whether he can make his next start.
PHILADELPHIA: When Brett Myers rejoins the Phillies, he could reclaim his closer's role quickly. Myers, sidelined since May 23 with a shoulder injury, had six saves in seven chances after replacing the injured Tom Gordon. Antonio Alfonseca has filled in with both Myers and Gordon out, but manager Charlie Manuel anticipates going back to Myers eventually. ``I think when Brett is healed, he's healed,'' Manuel said. ``I think he's the one I can turn loose.'' Myers was to make another rehab appearance at Class-A Clearwater on Wednesday night. Gordon returned to the bullpen last week and the team will be cautious using him. ... With the trade deadline approaching, the Phillies are among several teams looking for pitching help. Manuel, however, is reluctant to lose one of his offensive players in any deal. ``It's got to knock my eye balls out,'' he said.
PITTSBURGH: OF Jason Bay was hitting .394 (13-for-33) with four homers and 14 RBIs in his last eight games against the Mets before Wednesday night. ... 2B Freddy Sanchez singled in the third inning and has hit safely in nine of his last 10 games. ... LHP Tom Gorzelanny left Wednesday night's game against the New York Mets in the third inning with shoulder stiffness. He was 9-5 with a 3.20 ERA entering the start. The Pirates scored just three runs in his five losses.
`I'm not going to stop my guys from having a little fun but just respect the game,'' he said.
MILWAUKEE: RH Scott Linebrink is expected to join the Brewers in St. Louis on Friday. Milwaukee got him from San Diego for three minor league pitching prospects, giving the bullpen another setup man. ... GM Doug Melvin isn't counting on more trades. ``I'm not sure there's anything else we'd do,'' Melvin said. ``This was one of our No. 1 goals. We have versatile players on the bench. We'd like our players on the offensive side to produce the way they did in the first half, when we got ourselves where we are. If they do that, we'll be fine.'' ... CF Bill Hall flew in from Arizona, where he played two games with the rookie team, and was activated off the DL. Hall sprained his right ankle three weeks earlier. ... Tony Gwynn Jr. was optioned to Triple-A Nashville to open a roster spot. Gwynn was called up when Hall got hurt and hit .200 in 10 games, including eight starts in center.
CINCINNATI: Hits king Pete Rose watched some of the game from a reserved party area in the second deck behind home plate. Rose was in town for a youth baseball camp. Rose, who is serving a lifetime ban for betting on Reds games, has attended numerous games in Cincinnati. ... Adam Dunn singled in his first at-bat, extending his hitting streak to a season-high 11 games. ... A day after RHP Matt Belisle struggled and was lifted early, interim manager Pete Mackanin didn't want to discuss whether he might lose his spot in the rotation. ``Don't ask me any questions about whether we're going to change the rotation so I don't have to sidestep them,'' he said.
LOS ANGELES: Closer Takashi Saito, who has not been available for the last six games because of an injured shoulder blade, should be available on Thursday. ``He's great,'' manager Grady Little said. ``He's ready to go. He threw off the mound today and it was very positive.'' ... LHP Randy Wolf, on the 15-day DL since July 4 because of shoulder soreness, was scheduled to make a rehab start in Class-A on Wednesday night. ``He might have one more start depending on how he does,'' Little said. ``We'll decide after this game.'' ... The trip to Houston was a homecoming for Dodgers first baseman James Loney, who starred at Elkins High School in nearby Missouri City. He had planned to attend Baylor before signing with Los Angeles.
HOUSTON: Houston ace Roy Oswalt, who missed his scheduled start on Wednesday with chest soreness, threw a bullpen session instead. He said before the session that he felt good after throwing a bit on Tuesday. ``I threw yesterday and had pretty good velocity so that's good,'' he said. Manager Phil Garner said he's encouraged by Oswalt's progress and isn't concerned that the problem will linger. Oswalt is scheduled to make his next start on Tuesday. ... Rookie Hunter Pence, who will miss four-to-six weeks with after hurting his wrist sliding into second base last week, will get a lesson in sliding when he's healthy. ``We'll fix that,'' Garner said. ``He needs to pull his hands up in the air when he slides.''
ld Perry.
ST. LOUIS: LHP Mike Maroth was on the lineup card as a reliever, although he's still scheduled to make his next start on Friday against the Brewers. Maroth's start was pushed back three days after two horrendous outings, and allowed 10 runs in five innings his last time out in Atlanta. ... Chris Duncan was batting sixth against LHP Ted Lilly, although another left-handed hitter, Jim Edmonds, was on the bench. ``Dunc's been one of our hottest guys,'' manager Tony La Russa said. ``We've got a lot of games this week, so Jim doesn't need to play today versus Chris.'' ... LHP Mark Mulder will need at least one more bullpen outing before he can begin a longterm rehab assignment that will start with simulated games in Florida. Mulder, recovering from rotator cuff surgery last September, might not be back until the final month.
FLORIDA: SS Hanley Ramirez, who suffered a left shoulder dislocation Sunday against Cincinnati, missed his third straight game. ... 2B Dan Uggla's two-homer game Tuesday was his fifth of the season and of his career. ... 3B Miguel Cabrera extended his hitting streak to a career-best 14 games after a 1-for-4 night Tuesday ... RHP Byung-Hyun Kim, the Diamondbacks' one-time closer, returns to Chase Field and will start Thursday night against Arizona's Micah Owings. Kim is 11-8 with a 3.84 ERA in 127 games in Phoenix but is 1-5 with an 8.56 ERA against his first club.
ARIZONA: LHP Randy Johnson told Diamondbacks manager Bob Melvin that he's ready to throw his bullpen session Friday as he continues working his way back from a herniated disk that has sidelined him most of the last two months. ``I was surprised with some of the things I read when he came in today and said he was ready to go on Friday,'' Melvin said before Wednesday's game against the Florida Marlins. ``I didn't hear what he said to the media yesterday but I read some of the things and seemed like there were different versions of it.'' Melvin said he thought Johnson looked ``crisp'' for the first two innings of the simulated game before tiring in the third. ... Arizona's four-game winning streak is the team's longest since a season-best eight-game streak May 24-June 1.

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