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Marlins face crowded schedule

wire services
Published September 7, 2004

MIAMI - The Marlins worked out for the first time in four days Monday, and manager Jack McKeon was optimistic the extra rest would help the team in the race for the NL wild card.

"We couldn't do anything about Mother Nature," McKeon said. "A couple of days off might be just the ticket."

That's good because the Marlins probably won't get any more rest until the season ends. Hurricane Frances wiped out a three-game series against the Cubs, and the Marlins are looking at playing 30 games over the next 27 days.

"We better be up to the task or we'll be going home early this year," centerfielder Juan Pierre said.

The Marlins had won seven straight when Frances crept ashore.

Florida also moved the start time of Thursday's game against the Mets up two hours to 1:05 p.m., clearing the way for a possible doubleheader Friday in Chicago as a makeup game for one of the weekend's postponements.

REDS RETAIN MILEY: Cincinnati will pick up the contract option of manager Dave Miley and keep his coaching staff for another year.

Miley, a Tampa Chamberlain graduate, agreed in December to a one-year contract to manage through the 2004 season with a club option for 2005.

Miley has been with the Reds organization for 25 years. Before managing the Reds, he spent seven years managing Triple-A Louisville and Indianapolis.

Meanwhile, the Reds designated Brandon Larson for assignment to the minors five days after he returned from an injury. The third baseman has been on the disabled list three times this season.

FSL PLAYOFFS: Today's start of the Western Division championship series between the Tampa Yankees and Dunedin Blue Jays was postponed. The series will be rescheduled today.

BRAVES: Catcher Johnny Estrada didn't get to the ballpark until the third inning. His wife, Jennifer, delivered the couple's third child at 10:45 a.m. Johnny Estrada IV weighed 9 pounds, 8 ounces.

BREWERS: Centerfielder Scott Podsednik tied Pat Listach's 1992 club record of 54 stolen bases.

CUBS: Former Devil Ray Ben Grieve, playing rightfield in place of Sammy Sosa, cut his face when he crashed into the wall while making a catch in the fifth inning against the Expos. He was hospitalized for precautionary X-rays on his left shoulder. Sosa, who has bursitis in his right hip, is day to day. ... Former Rays catcher Mike DiFelice reported six days after being acquired from the Tigers.

TIGERS: Catcher Ivan Rodriguez stayed with his family in Miami because of Hurricane Frances, forcing him to miss the game against the Royals. ... Closer Ugueth Urbina remained in Venezuela, where he was dealing with the kidnapping of his mother. The top investigator for Venezuela's federal police said no suspects have been identified in the kidnapping of Maura Villareal.

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