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SPRING TRAINING ROUNDUP News and notes



Published: Fri, February 18, 2005 @ 12:00 a.m.



Striking words: TAMPA, Fla. -- With the Curt & amp; Pedro tandem broken up, Boston began its first spring as World Series champions since 1918 with some striking words from Schilling and new teammate David Wells. Schilling arrived at the Red Sox camp in Fort Myers on Thursday, saying he hopes to recover from ankle surgery in time to pitch Boston's April 3 opener at -- where else? -- Yankee Stadium, possibly against former Arizona teammate Randy Johnson. After Schilling and Pedro Martinez helped lead Boston to its first title in 86 years, Martinez left to sign with the New York Mets. Schilling said he enjoyed pitching with Pedro a lot more than Martinez liked pitching alongside him. "I think that was pretty obvious at the end, not while it was happening. But I guess when you look at what he said afterwards it was obvious that it wasn't as fun of a thing for him as it was for me," Schilling said. "When the playoffs came and he made the comment about somebody having to have a lot of guts to come up and tell him he wasn't going to pitch Game 1, that kind of told me where we were at." Wells, who helped New York win two AL pennants and one World Series, got right into the swing of the Red Sox-Yankees sniping, saying Alex Rodriguez "has to earn it" and admitting he didn't get along with Yankees manager Joe Torre. "I remember reading the press conference or something when he went there," Wells said of A-Rod. "He said: 'When we.' He said a 'we' in his comment about like he's won like three or four rings with them and he hadn't, and that kind of disturbed me. He shouldn't put himself in that category. You've got to earn it. It's like he's been there the whole time. But you can't take away what A-Rod has done for the game. He's a great player, and he will continue to be a great player."

Giants: Manager Felipe Alou said he understands there will be even more attention on his team this spring because of the steroid suspicion surrounding Barry Bonds. "If you're good, you're good -- whether it is the era of the steroids, or the cigars, or the hot dog, or the beer, or the amphetamine, or the red juice, or the whiskey," Alou said. "He's been through the death of Bobby, his dad, along with the steroid stuff. I expect for him to just show up and swing the bat and hit."

Cubs: Manager Dusty Baker said he reached out to Sammy Sosa after the outfielder was traded to Baltimore, seeking to understand why his relationship with the All-Star came apart at the end of last season. "I got hold of him and we had a short conversation. I wished him well. I did ask him, I said, 'Hey, man, I'm still bewildered about what happened and why,' and he didn't really have an answer," Baker said before Chicago's first workout of the spring. He said, 'It's in the past, good luck and God bless you.' And that was the extent of the conversation."

Nationals: Washington held its first workout for pitchers and catchers following the team's move from Montreal. Players more or less used to performing in a vacuum are having every throw filmed by seven television cameras. "It was a little strange during stretch seeing everybody out there," reliever Joey Eischen said. "Being an Expo, being here a long time, I've never seen that. I've been in a lot of other camps. I've been with 11 other pro teams. It would equate a little bit with the Yankees."

Mariners: New manager Mike Hargrove didn't like his cap as he watched his team work out for the first time. "The hat's killing me," he said, laughing. "The person who designed these hats should be drawn and quartered, but the Seattle colors are nice. That part, I like."

Rangers: Kenny Rogers took part in the first workout but didn't pitch. "Kenny was scheduled to throw today, but he needs to have an orthopedic exam first," manager Buck Showalter said. All-Star closer Francisco Cordero, who set a team record with 49 saves last season, felt soreness in his pitching shoulder. The right-hander will take a few days off.

Associated Press




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