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MLB roundup: Most coveted baseball card sells for $2.1 million

The SportsXchange

A rare Honus Wagner baseball card sold for a record $2.1 million at an auction Saturday, according to ESPN.com.

The 1909-11 T206 Wagner card, the most coveted baseball card of all time, sold online to an undisclosed buyer.

The record price for a card sold publicly broke the previous mark of $1.6 million by the same card in 2008.

Goldin Auctions auctioned the card.

"My overall goal on the T206 Wagner from the start was to set a record for a trading card auction," Ken Goldin of Goldin Auctions said. "My auction house set a new record by close to $500,000."

Goldin would not reveal the buyer.

The card is not without controversy. It is believed that only 200 of the cards were originally produced because Wagner was not happy that the American Tobacco Company produced it and did not like the smoking message it sent to kids, even though Wagner smoked and endorsed cigars. It is also thought that Wagner simply was mad because he was not paid for his image.

Another version of the card sold for $2.8 million in 2007, the most ever in a private sale. Former owner and hockey Hall of Famer Wayne Gretzky sold the mint-condition card to Arizona Diamondbacks owner Ken Kendrick in 2007 for the record amount. That card is controversial because it may have been trimmed to improve its condition.

---The Colorado Rockies traded catcher Ramon Hernandez to the Los Angeles Dodgers for right-hander Aaron Harang and $4.25 million, Jon Heyman of CBS Sports reported Saturday.

Hernandez, 36, is owed $3.2 million this season and was the Rockies' third catcher behind Wilin Rosario and Yorvit Torrealba. He hit .217 with five home runs in 52 games for the Rockies last year while dealing with hand and hamstring injuries.

He will likely back up A.J. Ellis as the Dodgers could option Tim Federowicz to Class AAA Albuquerque.

Harang, 34, is set to make $7 million this year with a $7 million option for next year. He started the season in the Dodgers' bullpen. He was 10-10 with a 3.61 ERA in 31 starts last year.

Heyman reported that the Rockies will probably turn around and trade Harang to another team.

---The Milwaukee Brewers announced Saturday that they placed third baseman Aramis Ramirez on the 15-day disabled list with a left knee sprain.

Josh Prince was called up from Class AAA Nashville fill Ramirez's spot on the 25-man roster.

Ramirez, 34, aggravated the knee while running the bases during Friday's game against the Arizona Diamondbacks on Friday. An MRI taken after the game confirmed the injury.

Ramirez was 5 for 13 with three doubles in four games before getting hurt.

Prince, 25, hit .251 with seven home runs in 137 Class AA games last season. He played in two games for Nashville before getting recalled. Prince has not appeared in a major league game.

---Los Angeles Angels outfielder Josh Hamilton told reporters Saturday that his wife, Katie, had to call security from her seat at the Ballpark in Arlington before Friday's game against the Texas Rangers.

"People were being ugly, not necessarily (just) booing," Hamilton said. "They were being inappropriate with kids around. And that was before the game even started."

Hamilton starred for the Rangers before signing with the Angels as a free agent in the offseason. His tenure with the Rangers ended on a bad note as fans booed him at the end of the season as he struggled at the plate and the team lost the division lead during the final weekend.

Security guards were stationed in the area of the stands where his wife and four children sat on Friday. No other incidents occurred.

"It was a good lesson for the kids," Hamilton said. "People in general. Don't put your faith in man. Put your faith in the Man upstairs."

Hamilton said his children were not affected after the game.

"It's cool," he said. "They weren't upset when I got home. They kissed me and hugged me."

He said they would attend Saturday's game as well.

---Toronto Blue Jays slugger Jose Bautista was out of the lineup Saturday for the second straight day because of a sore right ankle.

He was injured during Thursday's game against the Cleveland Indians while trying to beat out a grounder in the eighth inning.

"He still didn't feel quite right this morning," manager John Gibbons told MLB.com after taking a few swings in the batting cage before Saturday's game against the visiting Boston Red Sox. "It's a long season. No point putting him in a situation to re-aggravate it."

The ankle is not swelling and Bautista described the ankle as simply sore.

Also, the team announced that it promoted right-hander David Bush from Class AAA Buffalo and designated righty Jeremy Jeffress for assignment.

Bush, 33, played for the Blue Jays from 2002-05. He has a career 56-69 record with a 4.70 ERA in 210 games (187 starts). He also played for the Milwaukee Brewers.

---Boston Red Sox right-hander John Lackey re-injured his throwing arm in his return from elbow surgery Saturday against the Toronto Blue Jays.

Lackey, who had not pitched in almost 1 1/2 years, hurt his right arm in the fifth inning after throwing a two-strike pitch in the dirt to Blue Jays shortstop Jose Reyes.

Lackey clutched his arm in agony after the pitch as teammate Dustin Pedroia, manager John Farrell and team trainer Rick Jameyson ran to the mound. He left the game with his arm hanging at his side. He was replaced by Alfredo Aceves.

The 34-year-old last pitched on Sept. 25, 2011, against the New York Yankees.

Before the injury, Lackey was throwing well Saturday with his fastball reaching 94 mph.

---The Cleveland Indians announced Saturday that they recalled right-hander Trevor Bauer from Class AAA Columbus and placed left-hander Scott Kazmir on the 15-day disabled list with a right rib cage strain.

Bauer, who was acquired from the Arizona Diamondbacks in December, will make his Cleveland debut Saturday night by starting against the visiting Tampa Bay Rays. He was the No. 3 overall pick in the 2011 draft.

Kazmir's move to the DL is retroactive to last Tuesday.

---Los Angeles Dodgers right-hander Chad Billingsley is set to join the rotation on Wednesday against the San Diego Padres, MLB.com reported Saturday.

Billingsley had no problems with his bruised right index finger during a minor league rehab start Thursday.

Billingsley tossed four innings in a Class A Rancho Cucamonga game. He allowed four runs, six hits and three walks. He also struck out two and hit a batter.

"It went well," he said. "I accomplished everything I needed to to get ready for my next start. I've got no issues with the finger. I'm anxious to get back out there, compete and win some ballgames."

Billingsley was 10-9 with a 3.55 ERA and 128/45 strikeout-to-walk ratio in 149 2/3 innings over 25 starts in 2012 until an elbow injury cost him the rest of the season.

Also, left-hander Ted Lilly allowed nine hits, including three home runs, in six innings during a rehab start for Rancho Cucamonga on Friday. He is recovering from left shoulder surgery.

Former starters Chris Capuano and Aaron Harang are in the Dodgers' bullpen for now, but could return to the rotation if Billingsley or Lilly have problems.

---Washington Nationals first baseman Adam LaRoche is not in Saturday's lineup against the host Cincinnati Reds because of back stiffness, according to CSNWashington.com.

LaRoche aggravated his back during Friday night's 15-0 loss to the Reds. LaRoche may sit out Sunday as well. Chad Tracy is starting in LaRoche's place.

LaRoche, 33, batted .271 with 33 home runs and 100 RBI last year. He just started a two-year, $24 million contract with a mutual option for 2015.

---Baltimore Orioles minor league right-handed pitcher Daniel McCutchen was suspended 50 games for violating Major League Baseball's drug policy for using a banned substance, the league announced Saturday.

McCutchen tested positive for Methenolone and a metabolite of Trenbolone, the league announced. The suspension begins immediately.

The Orioles signed McCutchen to a minor league contract in November.

McCutchen, 29, was 1-0 with a 6.14 ERA in 7 1/3 innings during spring training with the Orioles before getting sent down to Class AAA Norfolk on March 23. In one game with Norfolk, McCutchen allowed four runs in 1 2/3 innings.

He is 8-11 with a 4.77 ERA in 108 games (15 starts) over four seasons with the Pittsburgh Pirates.
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