American League notebook -- May 9, 2012

The Sports Xchange
The SportsXchange

Baltimore: RHP Jason Hammel will skip his start Thursday due to a sore right knee, but he didn't think he'd land on the disabled list. The team needs to select starters for Thursday and Friday, as RHP Tommy Hunter was optioned to the minors after his Sunday start. ... IF Steve Tolleson's contract was purchased from Norfolk (Va.), and LH reliever Zach Phillips was optioned to the Class AAA club after one day in the majors. ... LHP Dontrelle Willis dropped his grievance against the Orioles, and the team will make him a starter in the minors, his agent told Willis, 30, will report to extended spring training in Florida this week. He had left Norfolk two weeks ago after a disagreement over whether he would start or relieve.

Boston: Fenway Park public address announcer Carl Beane, 59, was killed in a one-car crash. Beane, who has been the PA voice of the Red Sox since 2003, died when his car crashed into a tree and wall in Sturbridge, Mass., according to a release by the Worchester District Attorney. Beane was a long-time radio reporter in the Boston area. "No one loved his role with the Red Sox more than Carl did his," team president/CEO Larry Lucchino said in a statement. ... According to 98.5 The Sports Hub, RHP Josh Beckett was seen golfing last week, the day after the team announced he would miss a start due to stiffness in his right latissimus muscle. Beckett was unavailable for comment, as he had headed back to Boston in preparation for his start tonight against Cleveland. ... RHP Clay Buchholz is expected to make his next start Friday despite a 9.09 ERA. Buchholz is the first Red Sox starter since Red Ruffing in 1925 to allow at least five earned runs in six consecutive starts in one season.

Chicago: LH closer Chris Sale was due to undergo an MRI on his left elbow, according to pitching coach Don Cooper. Sale was recently moved from the rotation, where he was 3-1 with a 2.81 ERA in five starts, to the closing role. He blew his first save opportunity Tuesday, allowing an unearned run. ... RH reliever Jesse Crain (strained left side muscle) threw an all-out bullpen session, and barring soreness Thursday, he'll go to Class AAA Charlotte (Fort Mill, S.C.) for a rehab assignment. He could come off the disabled list Monday after making two minor league appearances.

Cleveland: 3B Jack Hannahan did not start due to sore left groin. Manager Manny Acta said the injury occurred during a Tuesday at-bat. "He's playable, but we want to be on the safe side," said Acta, who said he was hopeful Hannahan could back in the lineup tonight in Boston. ... DH Shelley Duncan wound up popping out to end a 14-pitch at bat vs. White Sox LHP John Danks in the second inning Tuesday. Duncan (4.63) and C Carlos Santana (4.46) ranked third and fourth in the AL in most pitches per plate appearance through Tuesday.

Detroit: C Alex Avila, who injured his left patellar tendon fielding a third-inning bunt Monday night, sat out the next two starts. He hoped to be able to play Thursday in Oakland but wasn't certain. "It's just a pain-tolerance thing. It's nothing that's going to require surgery or anything like that," he said. ... Delmon Young will be the primary designated hitter for the immediate future. "We just think that overall it makes us a better club, to be honest with you, but we've got to get him hitting," manager Jim Leyland said. "Right now, he's not hitting."

Kansas City: LHP Jonathan Sanchez, who has failed to pitch more than five innings in his past 11 starts dating back to last season, went on the disabled list due to left biceps tendinitis. Sanchez was 1-2 with a 6.75 ERA in six starts with the Royals, who acquired him in a November trade with the Giants for OF Melky Cabrera. 2B Johnny Giavotella was promoted from Class AAA Omaha (Papillion, Neb.), where he was hitting .331. ... 1B Eric Hosmer, who was hitting .111 (5-for-45) in his past 11 games, was not in the lineup for the first time this season. Hosmer had only nine extra-base hits in 116 at-bats overall this season.

Los Angeles: The Angels were shut out for the big-league-leading seventh time this season Tuesday. Last year, the Angels were shut out 11 times, but seven of those also came before the end of May. ... Tuesday's 5-0 loss to Minnesota snapped a streak of 14 games in which the Angels had scored at least four runs against the Twins. According to STATS LLC, that was the longest active streak in the majors and tied for the second longest in Angels franchise history.

Minnesota: RH reliever Jared Burton threw a perfect eighth inning Tuesday against the Angels, extending his streak of no-hit innings to 10 1/3. During the streak, which covered 10 appearances, he had struck out 11 and walked two. ... Manager Ron Gardenhire said he would continue to play 3B Danny Valencia, who entered play Wednesday hitless in 21 at-bats this month. "I know he's pressing a little bit, trying to get hits like everybody else in our lineup, but a good two-hit day would probably make him feel pretty good about himself," Gardenhire said.

New York: LF Brett Gardner (right elbow strain) played his first rehab game Tuesday, going 2-for-3 for Class AAA Scranton/Wilkes-Barre (Moosic, Pa.). He handled two fly balls during his seven innings in the field. Gardner could return from the disabled list Thursday. ... In the first Yankee Stadium save opportunity since RH closer Mariano Rivera's season-ending knee injury, Rivera's introductory music, Metallica's "Enter Sandman," was not heard Tuesday. Instead, it was RH reliever David Robertson entering to Lynyrd Skynyrd's "Sweet Home Alabama." Robertson loaded the bases but closed out a 5-3 win over Tampa Bay.

Oakland: CF Yoenis Cespedes has missed the past two games with a left hand injury. X-rays came back negative, and he is day-to-day. ... RHP Brandon McCarthy was pushed back from his scheduled Tuesday start to at least Saturday because of shoulder soreness. McCarthy does not believe the issue to be as significant as a similar one that sidelined him for six weeks last season. He is scheduled for a bullpen session Thursday and will be re-evaluated then.

Seattle: CF Franklin Gutierrez, sidelined all season due to a right pectoral muscle injury and then plantar fasciitis, visited the team Tuesday. Gutierrez, who has been working out at the club's spring facility in Peoria, Ariz., checked in with the medical staff before beginning the next stage of his rehab. ... Manager Eric Wedge bumped Justin Smoak down to No. 7 in the batting order earlier this month, but he has no intention of benching the slumping first baseman. "All I want him to do is slow down, just hit and put up good at-bats and let that define itself as it may," Wedge said.

Tampa Bay: Jeff Keppinger was placed on the restricted list due to what the team said was a personal matter, and the Tampa Bay Times reported it was related to his ongoing divorce case in Georgia. The newspaper reported that Keppinger might rejoin the team as soon as Thursday. Keppinger was replaced on the roster by OF Brandon Guyer, who was called up from Class AAA Durham (N.C.). ... RHP James Shields felt he deserved a better fate Tuesday, as the three runs he gave up at Yankee Stadium came on two homers to right field that he believed were popups coming off the bat. "But you know the layout of the stadium here," he said.

Texas: RH reliever Koji Uehara's streak of consecutive batters retired ended at 18 on Tuesday, but he extended his scoreless streak to six innings and his walk-free streak to all 10 innings he's pitched this season. He had made 28 consecutive outings without issuing a walk. It's a club record but not a personal mark. Uehara went 36 games without allowing a walk while with Baltimore from July 19, 2010-April 15, 2011. ... IF Michael Young, on CF Josh Hamilton's four-homer game Tuesday: "Josh is the most talented player in the game. When somebody does something like this, it's always shocking, but he's one of the few guys you know are capable of actually doing it."

Toronto: Following RHP Brandon Morrow's six-inning outing in the finale at Oakland, Blue Jays starters have worked at least five innings in 33 consecutive outings dating back to Sept. 27. It is the longest active streak in the majors. ... DH Edwin Encarnacion ended an 0-for-21 slump with a solo homer in the eighth inning. His previous hit had been a three-run homer May 2 against the Rangers.

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