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Prior to make return today
By TIMES WIRES
Published June 18, 2006
CHICAGO - Mark Prior will get his first start of 2006 today.
Already on a slower-paced program to avoid the elbow problems he experienced the previous two springs, Prior strained a muscle in his right shoulder in March and began the season on the disabled list for the third consecutive time.
Prior, who has been on the DL six times during his five-year career, made four minor-league starts. Tuesday, he allowed one unearned run and four hits while striking out 10 in 62/3 innings at Triple A. He threw 90 pitches and likely will be limited to that today.
Meanwhile, fellow pitcher Kerry Wood , on the DL with a sore shoulder, hopes to pitch in a simulated game in a few days and return by the weekend.
ANGELS: Centerfielder Darin Erstad left in the fourth after aggravating an injured right foot. His status is unknown.
METS: Leftfielder Cliff Floyd went on the DL with a sore left ankle. Floyd, hitting .238 with six homers, sprained it while running the bases June6. Outfielder Xavier Nady , on the DL since May30 with an appendicitis, will complete a rehab stint at Triple A this weekend and be activated Monday or Tuesday.
NATIONALS: Shortstop Royce Clayton sat out Saturday after straining a muscle in his right shoulder while diving for a hit Friday. An MRI exam was negative, and he is day to day.
PIRATES: Kip Wells , who hasn't pitched this season because of a blocked artery near his right shoulder, might return Tuesday. Wells, who was supposed to be out until the All-Star break, is scheduled for a third rehab start Tuesday at Triple A. But Victor Santos has a split fingernail and blister on his right middle finger. If Wells isn't activated, Tom Gorzelanny will be called up to start.
REDS: Left-hander Brandon Claussen went on the DL with shoulder tendinitis. Claussen hasn't won since May19, a span of five starts, Reliever Joe Mays is expected to take his spot in the rotation Wednesday.