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President invited Palmeiro, family to dinner

7/17/2005 - MLB

Baltimore Orioles: Rafael Palmeiro's 3,000th hit earned him more than just a near-guarentee of entry into the Hall of Fame, it also garnered him a call from President Bush.

The Washington Post reported the two spoke for about five minutes.

"It's a great honor," Palmeiro told the Post. "We had a nice conversation. He was very proud for me to reach that milestone."

Palmeiro and Bush have been friends for more than decade, dating back to the time the president was owner of the Texas Rangers. Palmeiro and his family were also invited to dinner at the White House.

"It was very nice of him to take the time to call me," Palmeiro said. "That means a lot to me."

New York Yankees: Carl Pavano threw 55 pitches Saturday in Tampa, Fla., and general manager Brian Cashman told the New York Post the right-hander's session went well.

"He [Pavano] said it was going in the right direction," Cashman told the Post.

Pavano -- out with a shoulder injuiry -- could be back from the DL as early as July 25.

The Post also reported Yankees rookie right-hander Chien-Ming Wang is traveling to Birmingham, Ala., to have his right shoulder examined by Dr. James Andrews on Monday. Wang is also on the DL, and no timetable has been set for his return.

Yankees shuffle roster: The club purchased the contract of
right-hander Aaron Small from Triple-A Columbus and
designated infielder Russ Johnson for assignment.

Outfielder Melky Cabrera was optioned to Columbus on Sunday, and
outfielder Bubba Crosby is expected to be called up on Monday. The
Yankees will have to make another move on Monday to make room for scheduled starter Kevin Brown.

Small is scheduled to start on Wednesday against the Texas
Rangers, manager Joe Torre said before Sunday night's game against
the Boston Red Sox. Small was in spring training with the Yankees
but was sent to the minors at the end of camp.

The Yankees have been casting about for pitching because four
starters are on the disabled list: Brown, Carl Pavano, Jaret
Wright, and Chien-Ming Wang.

Cabrera hit .211 in six games with the Yankees since being
called up after a short stint in Triple-A. He also misplayed Trot
Nixon's line drive into an inside-the-park homer on Friday night.

Pittsburgh Pirates: The Pirates placed Craig Wilson back
on the 15-day disabled list Sunday with a fractured left hand.

Wilson, who returned from the disabled list July 9, injured his
hand in the first inning of Saturday's game when he got hit by a
pitch.

Wilson already missed two months this season with a finger
injury. He tore a sheath protecting a left middle finger tendon May
6 against Arizona.

Last year, Wilson hit a team-high 29 homers in his first full
season as a regular but has one home run in 31 games this season.

"It's unfortunate with the issues he had with his same left
hand, although this had nothing to do with it," Pirates general
manager Dave Littlefield said. "It's unfortunate because he hasn't
been able to get out there much this year. Particularly for us
offensively, since he led our team in home runs and RBIs last
year."

The Pirates promoted Chris Duffy from Triple-A Indianapolis
before the game. Duffy made his major league debut with the Pirates
on April 7 and played in seven games with the club. He hit .309 in
77 games for Indianapolis this season with seven homers and 31 RBI.

Texas Rangers: The team placed centerfielder Laynce Nix on the 15-day disabled list Sunday after he injured his
shoulder in Thursday's loss to the Athletics.

Nix left the game after making a diving catch in the sixth
inning of Oakland's 6-0 victory. He will be examined by team
doctors when the Rangers return to Arlington on Monday.

Jason Botts from Triple-A Oklahoma was recalled to replace Nix. A switch-hitter, Botts was batting .296 with 17 home runs and 63
RBI.

Nix has started 60 games for the Rangers, hitting .240 with six
home runs and 32 RBI.

St. Louis Cardinals: Catcher Yadier Molina was
placed on the 15-day disabled list Sunday with a broken left hand.

Molina, who's been unable to play since getting hit by a pitch
July 7, still has considerable soreness. The move is retroactive 10
days, which still might not be long enough.

"He's just not ready yet," trainer Barry Weinberg said Sunday.
"And I don't predict in the next three, four, five days that he'll
be quite ready, as sore as he is today. He got a little better
initially and then kind of hit a plateau."

The Cardinals recalled utility player Hector Luna from Triple-A
Memphis. They previously recalled catcher Mike Mahoney from Memphis
on Friday, and Mahoney made his second straight start Sunday.

Molina is batting .255 with five home runs and 30 RBI and has
shown one of the better arms in the NL. But manager Tony La Russa
doesn't want to rush Molina back.

"He's still sore," La Russa said. "It's better just to keep
him in shape, let him heal and not be tempted to use him in an
emergency."

Colorado Rockies: The team outrighted reliever Bobby
Seay to Triple-A Colorado Springs following its 9-4 loss to the
Cincinnati Reds on Sunday.

The Rockies intend to activate right-hander Jose Acevedo off the
15-day disabled list on Monday for the start of a series in
Washington, D.C. Acevedo has made four rehabilitation starts with
Colorado Springs, recovering from a strained groin.

The Rockies got Seay from Tampa Bay on April 8, after the Devil
Rays designated him for assignment. Seay was on the disabled list
from April 17 to June 5 with a strained chest muscle.

He left a game July 8 because of a swollen left thumb. He had
given up five earned runs in his last two appearances before the
demotion.

Cleveland Indians: The Indians optioned right-hander Kazuhito Tadano to Triple-A Buffalo on Sunday and called up
21-year-old pitcher Fausto Carmona.

Tadano was called up Saturday when right-hander Matt Miller went
on the 15-day disabled list with tightness in his right forearm.
The 25-year-old native of Tokyo pitched four innings in relief
during a 7-5 loss to the Chicago White Sox, allowing one run and
four hits while striking out four without a walk.

Carmona, a right-hander, started the season at Double-A Akron
and went 6-5 with a 4.07 ERA in 14 starts before being promoted to
Buffalo. In three starts for the Bisons, he went 2-0 with a 2.57
ERA.

Boston Red Sox: When it came time for Red Sox general manager Theo
Epstein to kick off the first fund-raising event for his charity,
he wanted to do something a little different and a lot more laid
back.

So Epstein took the popular winter fund-raiser, the "Hot
Stove-Cool Music" concert held each January, and brought it
outside.

"It beat having a rubber chicken dinner," said Epstein, who
estimated Saturday night's event for The Foundation To Be Named
Later would raise more than $250,000.

The show featured a lineup that included Ben Kweller, The
Gentlemen, Juliana Hatfield, Kay Hanley, Fountains of Wayne and a
slew of bands featuring baseball luminaries making guest
appearances.

"It's always special when baseball and music come together, but
to do it in this setting, in Fenway Park, under the stars makes it
a memorable night," Epstein said. "We're raising a lot of money
for a great cause so it's pretty special."

Epstein played guitar with local band Buffalo Tom. Red Sox
pitcher Bronson Arroyo, who recently released his debut CD also
performed, as did writer Peter Gammons, who played with his band,
the Hot Stove All Stars.

Pitcher Tim Wakefield appeared on stage with The Gentlemen in a
cowboy hat and strummed along on an acoustic guitar. Mike Timlin
joined Wakefield and master of ceremonies Mike O'Malley on stage to
help auction Red Sox items.

The charity was established by Epstein and his twin brother,
Paul, a social worker. The Foundation To Be Named Later is a branch
of the Red Sox Foundation that will benefit eight nonprofit
organizations that support community programs focusing on at-risk,
underprivileged and disadvantaged youth.

"Hot Stove-Cool Music" has been held at the Paradise Rock Club
every year since 1999, with the proceeds going to the team's main
charity, the Jimmy Fund.

Seattle Mariners: The M's activated infielder Dave Hansen from the 15-day disabled list after Sunday's game against
Baltimore, sending outfielder Chris Snelling back to Triple-A
Tacoma.

Hansen, hitting .194 in 25 games, went on the DL on July 3 with
an inflamed left elbow. Considered one of the game's best pinch
hitters, he joined the Mariners for the second time in two seasons
on May 3.

Snelling was called up July 3 when the Mariners designated Bret Boone for assignment. He appeared in four games, going hitless in
five at-bats. He walked July 6 in his first major-league plate
appearance since June 4, 2002, missing the 2004 season after
several injuries.

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.