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Spring Training Roundup

Alex Rodriguez, un-juiced. (AP)

Alex Rodriguez is still good at baseball.

The embattled Yankees slugger hit a two-run homer and drew two walks as New York opened its exhibition season with a 6-1 win over Toronto.

I won't go into Rodriguez's issues (this is a blog about baseball not steroids) but you've got to think it feels pretty good for him to just get out and play. As expected, a mixture of cheers and boos greeted Rodriguez -- something he's more than a little familiar with.

"When you're playing, it's hard to focus on standing ovations or boos. You're just trying to go out there and do your job," Rodriguez said.


Another player looking to focus on baseball, albeit for completely different reasons, is Houston Astros pitcher Mike Hampton.

Hampton, whose list of injuries could fill a medical textbook, was clearly rusty in the early going of his game against the Nationals, walking two batters and hitting a third before settling down to pitch two scoreless innings in 33 pitches.

Chico Harlan live blogged the game on the Nationals Journal, so be sure to check it out.


This early in spring training it seems like players fit into one of two categories: Either they're in the best shape of their lives (as reader adampschroeder commented in a previous post) or they're done for the season. Unfortunately for Minnesota's Boof Bonser and Colorado's Jeff Francis, it's the latter.

Bonser underwent arthroscopic surgery that revealed partial tears in his labrum and rotator cuff that will keep the Twins pitcher sidelined. MRIs on his shoulder had come up negative but tendinitis and general soreness persisted which led to what was initially an exploratory surgery.

For Rockies starting pitcher Jeff Francis, surgery was simply an option he had hoped to avoid. The Colorado left-hander came into spring training hoping to pitch through pain but decided last week to have surgery that will repair damage to his labrum and rotator cuff.

By CJ Holley  |  February 25, 2009; 8:15 PM ET
Categories:  Astros , Nationals , Rockies , Twins , Yankees  
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Posted by: natsfan1a1 | February 26, 2009 8:56 AM | Report abuse

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