Struggling Phils slugger back on DL

By wire services
Published July 2, 2005

PHILADELPHIA - The Phillies placed first baseman Jim Thome on the 15-day disabled list Friday with tendinitis in his right elbow.

Thome also was on the DL in May with a lower back strain and missed 19 games.

"I just want to get this thing healed up so we can get back going in the second half," Thome said before Friday's game against Atlanta.

Thome, hitting .207 with seven home runs and 30 RBIs, said his elbow has been bothering him for about a month but really started to hurt after a throw Thursday against the Mets.

Meanwhile, closer Billy Wagner became the center of a media storm after saying the Phillies had "no chance" to make the postseason.

"I think it's the truth," Wagner said. "The way we're playing now, if anybody's fool enough to think we're a playoff team the way we're playing right now, they're crazy."

NOMAR HEALING: Cubs shortstop Nomar Garciaparra said he is recovering faster than he expected from surgery on a ruptured tendon in his left groin and hopes to return for the final two months of the regular season. Garciaparra is taking ground balls and batting practice and doing some light running, but he has difficulty pushing off.

SHAKING IT OFF: Indians Triple-A pitcher Kyle Denney is having problems with his hearing and some dizziness after his skull was fractured by a line drive Sunday, but he can't wait to take the mound again. "As soon as I'm physically ready, I want to pitch," said the right-hander, speaking to the media for the first time since the injury.

MINOR-LEAGUE SUSPENSIONS: Two Nationals minor-leaguers were suspended by the commissioner's office for violating baseball's minor-league drug policy, including a 105-game punishment for Double-A catcher Ramon Castro for his second violation. Triple-A shortstop Josh Labandeira was suspended 15 games.

HOME RUN DERBY: Baseball is going international for the All-Star weekend contest. Instead of having four players from each league, the commissioner's office said it will have eight players represent their native countries at the July 11 event in Detroit.

BREWERS: Leftfielder Carlos Lee , the NL's RBI leader, left in the second with a left knee contusion. He is day to day.

CARDINALS: First-round picks Tyler Greene , a shortstop from Georgia Tech, and Mark McCormick , a right-hander from Baylor, signed minor-league contracts.

MARLINS: The team is leaning toward skipping struggling left-hander Al Leiter 's turn in the rotation in favor of rookie left-hander Scott Olsen .

ORIOLES: The team plans to use a four-man rotation until the All-Star break after optioning rookie right-hander Hayden Penn to Double A.

PADRES: University of Miami right-hander Cesar Carrillo , San Diego's first-round pick last month, agreed to a contract that includes a $1.55-million signing bonus.

PIRATES: Left-hander Zach Duke , the team's top prospect who leads Triple A with 12 wins, was recalled from Indianapolis. Former first-round pick Bobby Bradley was released.

TWINS: A CT scan on infielder Michael Cuddyer 's sore and swollen left hand revealed a deep bone bruise stemming from a pitch that hit him Wednesday. Manager Ron Gardenhire said Cuddyer likely will be out at least through the weekend.