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National League notebook -- May 15, 2012

The SportsXchange

Arizona: CF Chris Young (right shoulder) doubled in his first at-bat Monday in his first game on a rehab assignment at high-A Visalia (Calif.). He was 1-for-4 while playing eight innings in the field. The plan was to have Young play three games for Visalia before possibly rejoining the D-backs. ... RF Justin Upton on Monday got his first hit in 19 career at-bats against Dodgers LHP Clayton Kershaw. He also got the first stolen base against Kershaw this season.

Atlanta: 1B Freddie Freeman, who left Monday's game after the seventh inning because of blurred vision in his right eye, was not in the lineup Tuesday but is hopeful of playing tonight. Dr. Alan Kozarsky, the team's eye doctor, found scratches in both of Freeman's eyes, probably caused by the dry air in Colorado, where the Braves played May 4-6. Freeman noticed some blurriness in St. Louis over the weekend but was able to keep playing by changing contact lenses frequently. ... RH reliever Peter Moylan (offseason shoulder surgery) has one more week of long-tossing to go. After that, he's scheduled to throw his initial bullpen session.

Chicago: 1B Bryan LaHair has reached base in a team-high 32 consecutive games. He joins Phil Cavarretta (1945), Bill Buckner (1981) and Derrek Lee (2007) as Cubs first basemen since World War II with on-base streaks of 32 games. ... RH reliever Mike MacDougal signed a minor league contract and will report to Class AAA (Des Moines) Iowa. MacDougal, 35, was released by the Dodgers, for whom he had a 7.94 ERA in seven games. ... LHP Hunter Cervenka was acquired from Boston as the player to be named to complete the trade that sent CF Marlon Byrd to the Red Sox for RH reliever Michael Bowden last month. Cervenka, 22, will report to low-A Peoria (Ill.).

Cincinnati: OF Chris Heisey started his third straight game for only the second time all season. Heisey and Ryan Ludwick have been splitting time in left field. "We've been waiting on somebody in left field to have some good days. You want to build on what Heisey did," manager Dusty Baker said, referring to Heisey's 3-for-3, two-double game Monday. ... RHP Mike Leake, the scheduled starter tonight despite an 0-5 record and 7.71 ERA, said he knows what he's doing wrong. "It's not hitting my spots consistently," he said. "I'm fine in between starts. It's not mechanical. It's a matter of doing it when I'm out there in a game."

Colorado: X-rays were negative on the left leg of SS Troy Tulowitzki, who was struck by a line drive hit by Dexter Fowler on Monday as Tulowitzki stood on the top step of the dugout. Tulowitzki limped while beating out an infield single and was removed for a pinch runner. Because of the numbness he felt in his leg as he walked to the on-deck circle, Tulowitzki thought his leg was broken. ... RHP Jeremy Guthrie (shoulder) was activated from the disabled list to make the start, and RH reliever Carlos Torres was sent down to Class AAA Colorado Springs.

Houston: 1B Carlos Lee has stayed hot at the plate in the midst of the team-wide slump. Lee had his fourth three-hit game of the season on Monday, had two more hits Tuesday and is hitting .349 (22-for-63) over his last 17 games. LF J.D. Martinez, who came into the game in a 1-for-35 slump, also had two hits. ... RHP Jordan Lyles was recalled from Class AAA Oklahoma City to make the start, and RH reliever David Carpenter was sent down. Lyles, 21, had a 3.49 ERA with 32 strikeouts in six starts at Class AAA.

Los Angeles: OF Jerry Sands was called up from Class AAA Albuquerque to take the roster spot of CF Matt Kemp, who was placed on the disabled list because of a strained left hamstring. Kemp's streak of 399 consecutive games played, longest active streak in the majors, was snapped. It is the first time he has been on the DL in his career. ... OF Andre Ethier started in center field in a regular-season game for the first time in his career. He did, however, start the 2010 All-Star Game in center field for the National League. Manager Don Mattingly said OF Tony Gwynn Jr. would get the bulk of the starts in center field in Kemp's absence.

Miami: OF Bryan Petersen was recalled from Class AAA New Orleans, where he hit .407 (11-for-27) after getting demoted May 5. OF Kevin Mattison was optioned to New Orleans after Monday's game. He grounded out in his lone big-league at-bat during four days with the team. ... RHP Anibal Sanchez tied for the major league lead Monday with his seventh straight quality start but still got the loss. Miami has averaged only two runs of offense for Sanchez in his starts. "What can I do? I'll just continue to pitch good and wait for the run support, and that's it. I don't have a problem with that," he said.

Milwaukee: RHP Yovani Gallardo is 0-2 with a 22.24 ERA (14 runs in 5 2/3 innings) in two starts against St. Louis this season. In his other six starts, he is 2-2 with a 2.54 ERA (11 runs in 39 innings). ... IF Brooks Conrad has found the going a lot tougher in the majors than at Class AAA Nashville, where he was batting .400 when he was called up on May 4. Conrad went into Tuesday hitless in 15 at-bats with the Brewers.

New York: 3B David Wright said he hasn't yet considered or discussed with his agents whether he would have contract-extension talks with the Mets during the season. Wright is under contract through this season with a team option for next year. "That's something I've yet to think about or approach with anybody because it hasn't been brought up," he said. ... C Josh Thole said he has not had any symptoms since sustaining a concussion last week in a collision at home plate against the Phillies and hopes to soon begin baseball activities. Manager Terry Collins said Thole will likely need a minor league rehab stint before returning. Thole said he will try to better protect himself by switching to a hockey-style mask.

Philadelphia: RHP Vance Worley was scratched from his scheduled start tonight because of elbow soreness. Worley remained in Philadelphia to be examined by team doctors. "It is something that I can pitch with," Worley said. "But it is something that I wanted to get checked on." ... LHP Cliff Lee is winless over his first five starts of the season for the first time in his major league career. His 10-strikeout game was his 19th career double-digit strikeout game and his 11th as a Phillie.

Pittsburgh: OF Nate McLouth, the one-time All-Star and Gold Glover, remained stuck in a .178 funk through Monday in his bid to make a successful return to Pittsburgh. Manager Clint Hurdle indicated that McLouth needs to get going soon: "It needs to be about production now. It needs to be about finding a way to score runs and getting things moving forward." ... OF Starling Marte, the Pirates' top position-player prospect, rejoined the Class AAA Indianapolis lineup after missing two weeks because of a bruised left hand. Management sees Marte as being a virtual lock for a promotion at some point this summer.

St. Louis: CF Jon Jay, who was 1 for his last 15 (a bunt single), went on the disabled list, still not over the sprained right shoulder he sustained last month when he ran into the center-field wall. OF Shane Robinson, optioned to Class AAA Memphis on Sunday, rejoined the team after playing one game in the minors and getting three hits. ... RF Carlos Beltran (right knee) sat out a second consecutive start although he was walked intentionally as a pinch hitter. Beltran said his knee was "no better. But not worse."

San Diego: OF Jeremy Hermida remained in Philadelphia to have surgery to repair a sports hernia. He is expected to miss another four to six weeks. ... RH reliever Luke Gregerson won't soon forget his 28th birthday. He gave up two homers in the eighth inning Monday, to Chad Tracy and former Padre Xavier Nady. It was the first time Gregerson had ever allowed two homers in a major league appearance, and half of Tracy's six pinch-hit homers have come off Gregerson, the first two in 2009.

San Francisco: Manager Bruce Bochy said first base is now a platoon of Brett Pill and Brandon Belt and added that Pill no longer will play left field because of the emergence of OF Gregor Blanco, who was in the lineup for the fourth straight game. In the three previous games, Blanco had five hits and five RBI. ... 2B Freddy Sanchez's latest setback doesn't involve his surgically repaired right shoulder, but his lower back instead. His rehab is on hold again.

Washington: C Carlos Maldonado was called up from Class AAA Syracuse to replace C Sandy Leon, who sustained a high right ankle sprain in his major league debut Monday in a collision with San Diego's Chase Headley. C Wilson Ramos (torn ACL in right knee) was transferred from the 15-day disabled list to the 60-day DL to make room for Maldonado on the 40-man roster. ... RF Bryce Harper hit his second homer in as many days, but that was the Nationals' only offense. Eight of Harper's 14 hits have been for extra bases, but he's hitting only .233.
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