Hurler acquired for player to be named

Updated: July 22, 2004, 10:25 PM ET
Associated Press

Houston Astros-Florida Marlins: The Marlins traded pitcher Darren Oliver to the Astros on Thursday for a player to be named or cash.

Oliver was 2-3 with a 6.44 ERA in 18 games this year, including eight starts. The left-hander hasn't pitched since June 30, the longest layoff of his career not related to an injury.

Opponents were hitting a lofty .319 against Oliver. He's allowed 91 baserunners in 56 2-3 innings.

Houston general manager Gerry Hunsicker, in Arizona for a two-game set against the Diamondbacks, welcomed the addition. Mike Gallo was the only left-hander in the bullpen.

"It's always good to add another lefty," Hunsicker said. "Some of the teams, looking ahead at who we have to play, have some good left-handed hitters. That's been one of the weaknesses of our bullpen.

"Gallo has not been as effective as he was a year ago, and maybe this will take the pressure off him," he said.

Oliver is set to join the Astros on Friday when they host Milwaukee. Hunsicker said he might wait until then to make a move to clear a roster spot for Oliver.

"We're going to need some time to decide," Hunsicker said.

Oliver, 33, is 86-79 with a 5.08 ERA since starting his major league career in 1993 with Texas. He's also pitched for St. Louis, Boston and Colorado.

Colorado Rockies: Right-hander Jamey Wright rejoined the Rockies just one day after he was released by the Kansas City Royals.

Wright, selected by Colorado in the first round of the 1993 draft, signed with the Rockies for the rest of the season. He went 8-6 with a 4.21 ERA in 18 starts for the Royals' Triple-A Omaha farm club this year.

"It's just awesome to be back here," Wright said. "I've got a lot of friends still here and a lot of friends that I've played against. So it's pretty exciting."

Wright went to spring training with the Chicago Cubs as a non-roster invitee before signing a minor league contract with the Royals.

After he was released Wednesday, he flew to Los Angeles and underwent a physical, then had a bullpen session Thursday before Colorado's 4-2 loss to the Dodgers. He is scheduled to start Saturday night at Arizona in place of right-hander Denny Stark, who was placed on the 15-day disabled list Tuesday because of a groin strain.

"If we were going to have a tryout, we would have had it somewhere else. We wouldn't have had it in the bullpen at Dodger Stadium," manager Clint Hurdle said with a grin. "If he doesn't fall down, he'll start Saturday."

Toronto Blue Jays: The Blue Jays purchased the contract of right-hander Kevin Frederick from Syracuse of the International League and optioned righty Bob File to the Triple-A farm team.

Frederick was 3-2 with five saves and a 0.99 ERA in 20 games at Syracuse. Before that, he went 2-0 with one save and a 1.27 ERA at New Hampshire of the Double-A Eastern League, striking out 26 and walking five in 21 1-3 innings.

File, brought up from the minors in June 3, was 0-0 with a 5.48 ERA in 14 games with Toronto.

File gave up a three-run homer to Gary Sheffield on his first pitch after relieving Wednesday night in the Blue Jays' 10-3 loss to the New York Yankees. He was charged with two runs and six hits in 2 1-3 innings.

To make room on the 40-man roster, Toronto transferred catcher Bobby Estalella from the 15-day disabled list to the 60-day DL.

Cleveland Indians: The Indians purchased the contract of right-hander Chad Durbin from Triple-A Buffalo and optioned left-hander Jeriome Robertson to the International League team.

Durbin began the season with the Indians and went 3-4 with a 10.70 ERA in 10 outings, including two starts.

The 26-year-old was sent to Buffalo on May 29. In nine starts for the Bisons, he had a 3-3 record and 3.46 ERA.

Robertson, acquired from the Houston Astros for two minor league outfielders in a trade just before the season began, is going to Buffalo for the third time this year.

In two stints in Cleveland this season, he had a 12.21 ERA in eight relief appearances.

Robertson gave up four runs in two-thirds of an inning Wednesday night in Cleveland's 14-0 loss to the Chicago White Sox before being ejected after hitting Magglio Ordonez with a pitch.

Detroit Tigers: The Tigers recalled right-handed reliever Danny Patterson from an injury rehabilitation assignment at Triple-A Toledo.

Right-hander Craig Dingman was optioned to the Mud Hens to make room for Patterson on the 25-man roster.

Patterson had been placed on the 15-day disabled list June 28 with bursitis in his right shoulder. In 32 games with Detroit this season, he is 0-4 with a 3.98 earned run average and two saves.

Dingman was 2-1 with a 5.03 ERA in 15 games for the Tigers.

Cincinnati Reds: Left-hander Jesus Sanchez refused a demotion to the Cincinnati Reds' Triple-A team, opting to become a free agent.

Sanchez went 0-2 with a 7.53 ERA in three starts for the Reds, who designated him for assignment Sunday. He cleared waivers but refused an outright assignment to Louisville.

Sanchez has also pitched for Florida, the Cubs and Colorado. He was part of a move that backfired on July 2, when the Reds called him up from Louisville to start the first game of a series against the Cleveland Indians.

The Indians were only 9-17 against left-handers at the time but rolled to a 15-2 victory by piling up nine runs in the first five innings off Sanchez and left-hander Mike Matthews.

Copyright 2004 by The Associated Press