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By MARK DIDTLER, BRANT JAMES, Times wires

© St. Petersburg Times, published March 8, 2001


Blue Jays denied compensation in Sirotka deal

DUNEDIN -- The six-player trade that sent David Wells to the White Sox for injured pitcher Mike Sirotka was upheld Wednesday by commissioner Bud Selig, who denied Toronto's bid to change the deal.

In a statement, Selig said Toronto had the chance to make the trade conditional on Sirotka's health but chose not to.

Chicago sent Sirotka to Toronto on Jan. 14 with pitchers Kevin Beirne and Mike Williams and outfielder Brian Simmons in exchange for Wells and pitcher Matt DeWitt. Sirotka, 29, has a partial tear of the rotator cuff and a torn labrum in his left shoulder.

"This is bitterly disappointing because the facts are so apparent and clear to me," Blue Jays general manager Gord Ash said. "To suggest we didn't do our job, I think, is very dangerous." -- TIMES WIRES

Jeter may play Saturday

TAMPA -- Shortstop Derek Jeter could return Saturday when the Yankees host the Phillies.

Jeter took 56 swings in the batting cage Wednesday, his first session since Feb. 26. He has an inflamed joint in his right shoulder.

"Every day you do a little more and find out," Jeter said. "Hopefully things will continue to progress."

ETC: Left-hander Andy Pettitte starts Thursday night's game against the Tigers in Lakeland. ... Leftfielder Shane Spencer (right knee tendinitis) reported improvement but remains out of action of indefinitely. ... Reliever Ramiro Mendoza (shoulder) might make his spring debut Sunday. ... Right-hander Scott Kamieniecki (back) threw batting practice and might pitch in a game next week. -- MARK DIDTLER

Knuckled down

CLEARWATER -- Doug Glanville doesn't ever want to face a knuckleballer. And in the fifth game of spring training? Come on.

The Phillies centerfielder had no choice Wednesday as Tim Wakefield started for the Red Sox at Jack Russell Stadium, but that didn't mean Glanville had to let the dastardly pitch ruin his next several days of preparation.

"I didn't want to swing at all," Glanville said. "But I waited until I had to.

"It's a big adjustment and it can throw you off for a while."

Glanville waited for two strikes until he swung, and missed, leading off the game. He flew out to left in the third.

"The wind out there today was helping the ball move even more," Glanville said. "I don't want to see that again until I have to in the season."

BULL-DOZED: The Phillies bullpen imploded for the second consecutive day. Ricky Bottalico allowed four runs in the ninth, all on long home runs to right, as the Red Sox came back to win 9-8.

Trot Nixon tied the score at 6 with a blast before Mike Neill hit a two-run shot and Morgan Burkhart homered on the next pitch.

GOODBYE: Manager Jimy Williams planned to leave ace Pedro Martinez and shortstop Nomar Garciaparra in Fort Myers, but he didn't expect centerfielder Carl Everett to keep them company.

Everett arrived at the team's spring complex minutes before its 7:45 a.m. departure time, unpacked, unprepared and, therefore, not on the trip.

Williams said he was unaware Everett was not on the bus until someone told him. He instructed the driver not to wait.

EXTRA GAMES: The Phillies and Rays will play a split-squad game 1 p.m. Sunday at Florida Power Park. The game was not on the Phillies' spring schedule. -- BRANT JAMES

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