Strong out for rest of season after being hit in hand

Updated: September 12, 2005, 1:42 AM ET news services

Seattle Mariners: Mariners outfielder Jamal Strong broke a bone in his left hand after being hit by a pitch in the first inning Sunday and is out for the rest of the season.

Strong, making a rare start, remained in the game after being hit by Baltimore's Bruce Chen and scored later in the inning. But after taking the field in the top of the second, he quickly returned to the dugout.

X-rays revealed a fracture of the third metacarpal. That takes four to six weeks to heal.

Strong was suspended earlier this season for testing positive under Major League Baseball's policy on performance-enhancing drugs. He was hitting .250 in 16 games for the Mariners.

Atlanta Braves: Left-hander Mike Hampton was activated off the 15-day disabled list by the Braves before Sunday's game with the Washington Nationals.

Manager Bobby Cox said he isn't sure how Hampton will fit into the rotation.

Hampton has been sidelined since Aug. 20 with a herniated disc. It was his fourth trip to the disabled list this season, the last two with problems.

He is 5-3 with a 3.50 ERA this season, making only 12 starts.

Los Angeles: Shortstop Cesar Izturis accepted the diagnosis of doctors and will have Tommy John surgery on Friday, The Los Angeles Times reported.

"Everybody is surprised, especially myself," he told the paper. "I was shocked. I saw two doctors, and they agreed."

Already on the disabled list with lower back ailment, Izturis, who isn't expected to play again until July, complained of tenderness in his elbow while playing catch last week.

"Every time I stopped throwing, then started up again, it would hurt," he told the Times. "This time it was worse."

Cuba, Japan win in Baseball World Cup action

Ormari Romero gave up four hits and struck out nine to lead defending champion Cuba over the Netherlands 3-1 Sunday at the Baseball World Cup.

Eriel Sanchez gave Cuba the lead in the second inning with a home run. Osmani Urrutia drove in the other two runs with a double in the fourth and a single in the sixth.

Ivanon Coffie hit a solo home run for the Netherlands in the top of the ninth.

Cuba (8-0) leads Group A, with the Netherlands (7-1) in second place. The top four teams in each group advance to the quarterfinals next week.

In Group B, Atsushi Fujii drove in five runs to lead Japan over Nicaragua 11-3.

Fujii singled with the bases loaded in the second inning, then hit a triple in the fifth, again with bases loaded.

Winning pitcher Shinsuke Saito struck out seven.

Also Sunday, South Korea beat South Africa 4-3; Canada beat China 14-2; Australia beat Spain 8-0; Brazil beat Sweden 11-4; and Colombia beat the Czech Republic 14-3.

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.