Athletics-Blue Jays
OAKLAND: INF Donnie Murphy was placed on the 15-day disabled list, retroactive to Aug. 19, with a strained rib cage muscle that has prevented him from swinging a bat. RHP Esteban Loaiza was activated from the DL and RHP Rich Harden was transferred from the 15-day DL to the 60-day DL. ... In his season debut, Loaiza allowed one run and four hits over 7 2-3 innings. He is 6-4 with a 3.60 ERA in 14 career appearances against Toronto. ... 3B Jack Hannahan got the first stolen base of his career, stealing second in the third inning.
TORONTO: DH Frank Thomas walked in the second inning, giving him 1,614 walks and tying him with Eddie Yost for ninth on baseball's career list. Thomas is second among active players, trailing Barry Bonds (2,548). ... 2B Aaron Hill's fifth-inning homer was his 13th of the season, trying him with Roberto Alomar for the second-highest total by a Blue Jays second baseman. Alomar hit 17 homers in 1993. ... The Blue Jays were swept by Oakland, their first sweep at home since dropping three straight to Boston from May 8-10.
SEATTLE: Rookie Ryan Rowland-Smith turned in a career-high four hitless innings in relief. The Australian lefty struck out six, also a career high, with two walks. And most importantly, no runs. He lowered his ERA to 3.47 after appearing for the first time in seven games. ``I didn't want to worry about how my stuff was,'' Rowland-Smith said. ``I just wanted to get ahead in the count and have fun.'' ... DH Jose Vidro was rested. With one more RBI, Vidro will establish a Mariners record by becoming the ninth player with 50 or more RBIs in a season. ... Ben Broussard subbed for Vidro and hit his seventh homer. Broussard had only one at-bat in the team's previous 11 games. ``I felt like I was on the DL. I said, 'Man, when I am going to get back in there?''' he said. ``I'm a competitor, and I want to be in there. We're winning, and that's great. I just have to wait my turn.''
cher (recovering from leg infection) would stay on his rehab assignment with Triple-A Rochester until perhaps Sept. 1 because of an overworked bullpen. Dennys Reyes was unavailable for a couple of days because he banged his elbow on a bullpen chair. Julio DePaula, called up after Tuesday's game, didn't make it to the ballpark in time Wednesday because his flight was canceled. ... Watkins, an energetic overachiever without any standout skills, was doing well before the injury. Coaches at Rochester told Gardenhire he was on the way to being the team's MVP before the Twins called him up. ``He gets a lot out of what he has,'' Gardenhire said.
Royals-White Sox
ed by the absence of Teahen.
CHICAGO: White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen said he is thinking about putting DH Jim Thome in the leadoff spot late in the season if the slugger needs more at-bats to reach 500 home runs. Thome, who hit his 493rd homer on Tuesday, is trying to become the 27th player to reach the mark. ``I've got to go through (general manager) Kenny (Williams), but don't be surprised if late in the season you see Jim Thome leading off to make sure he gets one more at-bat than everybody else,'' Guillen said. ``If he needs a couple of home runs at the end of the season, I'll give him one more at-bat than anybody else. Why not?'' Thome has never started a game hitting leadoff, but he has pinch-hit in the spot twice, going 0-for-1 with a sacrifice fly, according to STATS LLC. Thome had hit .296 with a .394 on-base percentage and 109 homers in 1,433 at-bats when leading off an inning entering Wednesday's game. ... OF Scott Podsednik is day-to-day after leaving Tuesday's game with a strained right rib cage muscle. Podsednik has struggled with injuries the last two seasons and has made two trips to the disabled list this year and played in just 45 games. ``It's a shame he's had to go through a year like this,'' Guillen said. The manager wouldn't say whether or not he'd want Podsednik, who will be a free agent, back next season. ``We have a lot of things up in the air,'' Guillen said.
TEXAS: The Rangers activated 3B Travis Metcalf from Triple-A Oklahoma before the first game of Wednesday's doubleheader and optioned LHP A.J. Murray to the same club. Metcalf marked the occasion with his first career grand slam. ... SS Michael Young was in the starting lineup for both games after leaving Tuesday's game in the fifth inning with back stiffness. ... In the opener, OF Frank Catalanotto started at 1B for the first time this season, the sixth Rangers player to start there this year. ... After Baltimore scored a run in the first inning, Texas had been outscored 94-47 in the first inning this season.
BALTIMORE: In his last 17 starts, Orioles LHP Erik Bedard had given up just 31 earned runs, one more than the Orioles allowed in their 30-3 loss in Wednesday's first game. ... Kevin Millar extended his string of reaching base by hit, walk or hit by pitch to 48 games with a single in the eighth inning of the opener. ... Brian Roberts' three-hit game in the opener was his 11th of the season and 43rd multihit game, pushing him ahead of Nick Markakis for the team lead in both categories.
CLEVELAND: RHP Fausto Carmona's complete-game loss to Detroit on Tuesday night, in which he allowed only three hits and threw 77 pitches in eight innings, was still a topic of conversation. ``It's amazing just how efficient he was,'' manager Eric Wedge said. ``He did a great job mixing his pitches and got some quick outs.'' ... Franklin Gutierrez was in the lineup in RF instead of Trot Nixon. ``Trying to get a little more speed in there,'' Wedge said. ``Obviously trying to create as much as we can.''
DETROIT: DH Gary Sheffield said he will be out for at least the rest of the current homestand, which ends on Monday, because of a sore right shoulder. It has bothered him for more than a month. ``It's too bad to play with right now,'' Sheffield said. ``It's more inflamed that it's ever been. I've gotten the last cortisone (shot) I could get. Sept. 1 is just around the corner. If not, I go on the DL.'' ... LHP Kenny Rogers, on the DL with left elbow inflammation, threw off a mound in the bullpen Tuesday and is scheduled for another bullpen session Thursday.
Red Sox-Devil Rays
BOSTON: LF Manny Ramirez was rested. Manager Terry Francona said Ramirez didn't try to talk him out of the decision. ``He knew he had the day off,'' Francona said. ``We talked about it four-five days ago. He knows he can use it.'' ... With Ramirez out of the starting lineup, 3B Mike Lowell batted fourth for the second time this season. ... Eric Hinske started in left, filling in for Ramirez.
TAMPA BAY: RF Delmon Young was out of the starting lineup for just the second time this season. The rookie had gone hitless (0-for-13) in four straight starts for the first time this year. ``I've just seen signs he's wearing down a little bit,'' manager Joe Maddon said. ... Maddon said reports on CF Rocco Baldelli, who has been out since May 16 with a strained left hamstring, have been positive after two minor league rehab games at Class-A Vero Beach. Baldelli could rejoin the team after rosters expand on Sept. 1.
NEW YORK: 3B Alex Rodriguez's two home runs, both solo shots, in Tuesday's loss to the Angels gave him 506 homers and sole possession of 21st place on baseball's career list. He had been tied with Eddie Murray at 504. Toronto's Frank Thomas ranks 20th with 508. ... The Yankees' 18-9 loss to the Angels on Tuesday night was a squeaker compared to Texas' 30-3 rout of Baltimore on Wednesday, and manager Joe Torre saw part of the game on TV in the clubhouse. ``Mercifully it's the ninth inning,'' he said. ``The worst part about it is they're playing at home, so the other team has to hit nine times.'' ... The Angels are the only team with a winning record (61-54) against the Yankees since Torre became manager in 1996, and the Angels eliminated New York from the playoffs in 2002 and 2005. Torre said the Angels are very aggressive, they take advantage of opponents' mistakes and, ``They do a good job matching up pitching-wise.''
LOS ANGELES: 3B Chone Figgins, who sprained his left wrist on a checked swing in the third inning Tuesday night, wasn't in the lineup for the series finale against New York. Figgins, fourth in the AL in batting (.335) and fifth in steals (34), had a CT scan Wednesday afternoon but results were not immediately available. ... Angels manager Mike Scioscia, a longtime Dodgers catcher, put LF Garret Anderson's 10-RBI game the previous night into personal perspective. ``He had one-sixth of my career high,'' Scioscia said. Scioscia's most RBIs were 66 in 1990. ... RF Vladimir Guerrero's run-scoring double in the third inning against the Yankees on Tuesday night gave him 100 RBIs for the season. He joined Anderson as the only players in Angels history to reach that total in four consecutive years.
LOS ANGELES: LHP Randy Wolf played catch for the first time since he was placed on the DL with shoulder soreness July 20. Wolf, who spent his first eight seasons with the Phillies and celebrated his 31st birthday in Philadelphia on Wednesday, tossed the ball about 20 times. ... Andre Ethier batted fifth after a one-game stint in the No. 3 spot. ... Chad Billingsley pitches the series finale Thursday afternoon. He's 9-4 with a 3.41 ERA away from home in his two seasons in the majors.
PHILADELPHIA: All-Star LHP Cole Hamels became the 19th different player to land on the DL this season. Hamels has a strained elbow and is expected to miss at least two starts, though he's optimistic he'll return when eligible Sept. 1. ``It's nothing serious,'' he said. ... RF Shane Victorino returned to the lineup after missing three weeks with a calf injury. ... All-Star 2B Chase Utley took live batting practice for the first time since he had hand surgery on July 27. Utley could return early next week. ... LHP Fabio Castro was recalled from Triple-A Ottawa and will make his first major league start on Thursday.
SAN DIEGO: OF Milton Bradley was back in the lineup and batting third, a day after making his first start since leaving a game Aug. 3 because of a strained right hamstring. ... RHP Greg Maddux was picked for the all-time Rawlings Gold Glove team, and manager Bud Black agreed with the choice. ``He's the best I've seen,'' Black said. While many good-fielding pitchers envision balls being hit back to them, Black said Maddux is even more precise. ``He'll sometimes take a little hop to the left or right, anticipating it being hit to a certain spot.''
an. Milledge began the two-run comeback with a single. After a few minutes, a Mets staffer walked past and playfully poked Milledge, deadpanning, ``The Mets win, 7-6.'' The excitable OF broke into a big smile and let out an ``Oh, yeah!''
ATLANTA: SS Edgar Renteria saw one pitch before leaving Atlanta's game against Cincinnati on Wednesday after aggravating the right ankle injury that forced him to miss 17 games this month. Renteria was activated from the 15-day disabled list before Wednesday's game after not playing since Aug 3 because of a sprained ankle. He'll be reevaluated on Thursday. ... Rookie IF Martin Prado was optioned to Triple-A Richmond to make room on the roster for Renteria. He hit .279 in 16 games. ... RHP Octavio Dotel tossed Tuesday and Wednesday, but he won't be ready to be activated when he's eligible on Thursday. Dotel has been on the disabled list since Aug. 8 with a right shoulder strain.
th Cincinnati. ... RHP Elizardo Ramirez's start on Thursday will be his second of the season and first of his career against Atlanta.
WASHINGTON: OF Ryan Langerhans cleared waivers and was outrighted to Triple-A Columbus. But manager Manny Acta said the Nationals haven't seen the last of Langerhans, who hit just .153 between Atlanta, Oakland and Washington this season. ``We're still not giving up on him,'' Acta said. ``There's a very good chance he'll be coming up in September,'' when rosters expand. ... Acta remains impressed by the fielding efforts of 3B Ryan Zimmerman, who fell a double short of the cycle Tuesday. ``I think he's going to be the next great defensive third baseman in baseball.'' ... OF Nook Logan's five-hit game Tuesday was the franchise's first since Mark Grudzielanek turned the trick on May 8, 1998. The franchise went 3,392 days between the five-hit efforts. ``I'm just going up there free-minded,'' Logan said. ``I'm not going up there (saying), 'Gotta' do this or gotta' do that.'' I gotta' take it one at-bat at a time.''
rare home loss Tuesday. Rodriguez hadn't allowed more than one run in his last six home starts before getting touched for seven runs in 5 1-3 innings. ``(Rodriguez) struggled a bit mechanically for awhile and was having problems getting his fastball down,'' Ausmus said. Rodriguez uncharacteristically walked four. ... RHP Woody Williams started Wednesday in search of wins in back-to-back starts for the first time all season. He is 2-0 overall with a 1.80 ERA in his last three starts since getting blasted for 12 runs in 11 innings against San Diego and Atlanta on July 27 and August 2.
FLORIDA: Miguel Cabrera has homered in every current NL park after hitting his first at Busch Stadium, which opened in 2006, on Tuesday. He's homered in 26 parks overall, including six AL stadiums and three that have closed, leaving only Fenway Park, Camden Yards and Tropicana Field among parks he has played in. Cabrera has three 30-homer seasons and is the only Marlins player to do it twice. ... Jeremy Hermida was batting .321 on the road and .223 at home. ... The Marlins had homered in 21 of 23 games, totaling 25 this month, after leading the NL with 39 homers in July.
ST. LOUIS: IF Aaron Miles left for California to attend to his wife. The couple is expecting a child. Manager Tony La Russa said Miles could be back by Thursday. ... CF So Taguchi, 2-for-5 against the Marlins this year and a .375 career hitter against Florida (15-for-40), got a spot start in a lineup filled with all right-handed hitters against Marlins LHP Scott Olsen. ... La Russa said slumping Chris Duncan would start on Thursday and that Jim Edmonds would play as long he felt well. The next three games are against right-handed pitchers. ... LHP Mark Mulder (shoulder) worked four innings in his second rehab start for Class-A Palm Beach, allowing an unearned run and two hits with three strikeouts. He could rejoin the team by September.
PITTSBURGH: LHP Zach Duke (left elbow tendinitis) threw 43 pitches in a simulated game at the team's training facility in Bradenton, Fla., on Wednesday. ``He threw all pitches with good command,'' manager Jim Tracy said. ``We'll see how he is Thursday before deciding what he does next.'' ... C Ryan Doumit (sprained left wrist) had a light running workout in Bradenton. ``He had the cast removed from the wrist last Monday and put into a splint,'' Tracy said. ``He can run and throw, but no activity that involves the wrist.'' ... 1B Adam LaRoche has impressed Tracy over the last two months. ``This is a guy that had struck out 80 times by the end of June and only 21 times since,'' Tracy said. ``And he's making contact and hitting the ball to all fields.''
COLORADO: C Edwin Bellorin, who strained his left hamstring legging out a groundout in his first major league at-bat on Aug. 8, is still not close to coming off the DL. Manager Clint Hurdle said Bellorin took batting practice Tuesday and may run on Thursday. ``They come to me when they're close,'' Hurdle said. ... Hurdle kept 1B Todd Helton out of the starting lineup against Pirates left-hander Tom Gorzelanny on Wednesday, but said it was merely to give him a day off. ``You always try to find time when it's best suited for the player,'' Hurdle said.
MILWAUKEE: Manager Ned Yost said he's not considering removing Chris Capuano from the rotation. Capuano has lost 10 straight decisions, and his last victory came on May 7. He's 5-10 with a 5.33 ERA. ... The Brewers have yet to name starting pitchers for Saturday and Sunday at San Francisco. RHP Claudio Vargas (10-4, 4.72 ERA) starts Friday night. He's 5-2 with a 5.55 ERA in 13 career appearances against the Giants. ... Milwaukee's nine-game, 11-day road trip ends with three games at the Chicago Cubs on Aug. 28-30.
our innings, a span of four appearances. He gave up a grand slam in Tuesday's 7-4 loss to Milwaukee. But Melvin said he isn't thinking about changing Pena's role as a set up man. ``This is a future All-Star, a future closer,'' Melvin said. ``We're not giving up on Tony Pena.''
CHICAGO: LHP Scott Eyre won his 20th career game in his 521st appearance on Tuesday night. Only LHP Tony Fossas has fewer wins (17) with more appearances (567). Eyre has a 1.74 ERA in 12 outings since the All-Star break after a 6.60 ERA in the first half. ``What gives a manager faith in a particular player is production,'' manager Lou Piniella said. Eyre is also one of just three left-handed relief (primarily) pitchers with four or fewer saves and at least 521 appearances, according to Sports Features Group, joining Rheal Cormier and Ray King. ... The Cubs are 14-3-2 in series when winning the first game. ... RHP Carlos Zambrano, who starts Thursday's series finale, is 4-0 with a 2.84 ERA in seven games against the Giants. He's lost his last two starts, the first time he's done that since last August.
SAN FRANCISCO: RHP Tim Lincecum returned from the bereavement list to pitch on Tuesday night, and came within a few pitches of recording his first career shutout and complete game. He faced three hitters in the ninth, all of whom scored. ``I felt like I was making decent pitches,'' he said. ``I was making the same pitches earlier and they made outs on them. I guess they made adjustments. I felt it was the best command I had in a long time.'' ... 1B Dan Ortmeier made his fifth start at first base. Manager Bruce Bochy said the converted outfielder has been working at making the switch. ``You can tell he hasn't played there much,'' Bochy said. ``But he's getting more comfortable. It's not easy to do. It takes a lot of athleticism to do that and he's shown that.'' ... C Eliezer Alfonzo was activated from the 15-day DL and then optioned to Triple-A Fresno. ... RHP Randy Messenger had surgery to put a screw in his fractured left hand. The procedure was performed by Dr. Gordon Brody.

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