Boston: 3B Will Middlebrooks has missed the past three games with a sore left hamstring, but he's hopeful of being back in the lineup tonight. "I want to play," Middlebrooks told the Boston Herald. "I'm going to try to get out there." ... The Red Sox hit .114 (5-for-44) with runners in scoring position during their 2-5 road trip to Seattle and Oakland. "We're all pressing. We're all trying to get something going and create stuff," RF Cody Ross said. Chicago: RHP Philip Humber will make at least one more start on his rehab assignment with Class AAA Charlotte (Fort Mill, S.C.), likely Friday, and he hopes to be back in the major league rotation when the second half begins next week. He has been out since June 17 due to a right elbow flexor strain. ... RH reliever Jesse Crain continued his shoulder-strengthening program, and manager Robin Ventura said there is a good chance that Crain could be ready to return to the bullpen at the start of the second half. Cleveland: RHP Justin Masterson, who will start Friday vs. Tampa Bay, has pitched at least six innings in 13 consecutive starts. That's the longest such streak by an Indians pitcher since LHP Cliff Lee had 14 consecutive starts of six or more innings from April 16-June 25, 2009. ... RHP Ubaldo Jimenez had a 5.79 ERA in his first 10 starts of the season, but in his past six starts, he has a 2.93 ERA. "At the start of the season, every fifth day he was a question mark," manager Manny Acta said. "Now we look forward to seeing him pitch every five days." Detroit: OF Andy Dirks remains in a walking boot, and manager Jim Leyland expects him to be unavailable due to his bad right Achilles tendon until well after the All-Star break. "He's going to have to go out and play a while (on a rehab assignment)," Leyland said. "He's got to get some at-bats." ... UT Matt Young, who was designated for assignment earlier this week, was outrighted to Class AAA Toledo (Ohio). He appeared in five games for the Tigers, batting 10 times, producing a double and nine strikeouts. Kansas City: LHP Doug Davis, who signed a minor league deal with the Royals in May, has pitched well for Class AAA Omaha (Papillion, Neb.). He has won five consecutive starts, giving him a 5-1 record and a 2.54 ERA in nine appearances. ... C Humberto Quintero, designated for assignment by the Royals last week, was placed on release waivers. Quintero, 32, hit .232 in 43 games, including 40 starts, for Kansas City this season. Los Angeles: RHP Dan Haren landed on the disabled list for the first time in his career, going down due to a sore lower back that has bothered him all season. No major-leaguer has made more starts since 2005 than Haren's 254. However, over his past five starts, he has allowed 27 runs (26 earned) on 43 hits, including nine home runs, in 27 innings. ... RH reliever Kevin Jepsen was recalled from Class AAA Salt Lake (Salt Lake City), where he was 2-2 with two saves and a 3.24 ERA in 23 appearances. The Angels hadn't announced which pitcher would fill Haren's rotation spot Sunday against Baltimore. Minnesota: RHP Sam Deduno will be the 11th pitcher to start a game for the Twins, more than any other team in the AL has used, when he takes mound against the Rangers on Saturday. He will take the rotation spot of RHP Nick Blackburn, who was optioned to Class AAA Rochester (N.Y.). Deduno, 29, was 1-2 with a 2.14 ERA in nine starts for Rochester. ... LHP Brian Duensing's left ankle is bruised and sore after being hit by an Alex Avila comebacker in Wednesday's 5-1 loss at Detroit. However, the Twins are confident he'll make his first scheduled start after the All-Star break. New York: 2B Robinson Cano is hitting .381 (40-for-105) with 12 home runs and 26 RBI in his past 28 games, lifting his average from .284 to .316. Cano is a lifetime .324 hitter (23-for-71) with three home runs and 13 RBI against Boston RHP Josh Beckett, who starts Friday against the Yankees. ... LF/DH Raul Ibanez likely will get his lone start of the weekend Friday, as the Red Sox will start lefties in the final three games of the series. Since June 1, Ibanez is batting .182 (14-for-77) with two homers and seven RBI in 27 games. Oakland: RHP Brandon McCarthy told the San Francisco Chronicle that he'd be interested in a contract extension with the A's even though his repeat shoulder injuries might weaken his bargaining position. McCarthy, currently on the disabled list, told the newspaper that he knows he'd be looking at an incentives-heavy deal, but he'd welcome the job security. ... LHP Tommy Milone is the first Oakland rookie to record eight wins before the All-Star break. Heading into his start tonight against Seattle, he is second among AL rookies in victories, trailing only Texas RHP Yu Darvish, who has 10. Seattle: RHP Hector Noesi, the AL leader with 11 losses, was optioned to Class AAA Tacoma (Wash.), where he could continue pitching during the All-Star break. Noesi has allowed 20 homers, tied for second in the league through Wednesday. Through 17 starts, he is 2-11 with a 5.77 ERA. ... OF Carlos Peguero was recalled from Tacoma, where he had homered in five consecutive games (six homers total) while going 8-for-20 (.400) with 10 RBI. In 49 games, Peguero was hitting .293 with 18 homers, 41 RBI and a .633 slugging percentage. Tampa Bay: OF Matt Joyce left his rehab assignment with Class AAA Durham (N.C.) after experiencing lower back tightness. He won't be able to rejoin the Rays until after the All-Star break. Joyce has been out since June 20 due to a side muscle strain. ... Luke Scott's second-inning groundout left him hitless in his past 37 at-bats, tying the franchise record set by Jose Cruz Jr. in 2004. Scott got the start at first base, the first time he's appeared in the field this season. Texas: RHP Colby Lewis made throws from the slope of the mound for the first time since he went on the disabled list June 26. The Rangers expect Lewis to be fine after battling a bit of forearm tendinitis. He is expected to rejoin the club for the start of the second half. ... RHPs Alexi Ogando (groin) and Neftali Feliz (elbow) both threw off a mound Thursday after RH reliever Koji Uehara (lat muscle) did so Wednesday. Uehara could begin a rehab assignment early next week. Toronto: RH reliever Sam Dyson, 24, was promoted from Class AA (Manchester) New Hampshire, where he had three saves and a 0.75 ERA in 15 appearances. He was a fourth-round draft pick in 2010 from the University of South Carolina, and he missed all of the 2011 season while rehabilitating from Tommy John surgery. ... RH reliever Scott Richmond was optioned to Class AAA Las Vegas. He made three appearances for Toronto after being called up June 26, and he allowed two runs in three innings.
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By The Sports Xchange July 5, 2012 8:20 PM