MLB notes

BRAVES: John Smoltz threw for the third consecutive day and, despite some control problems while pitching from a different arm angle, might be moving closer to his return from the disabled list.


Smoltz, who threw side sessions Tuesday and Wednesday, attracted more attention Thursday because he threw to hitters from the Turner Field mound before batting practice.

Smoltz, who said Tuesday he won't be providing regular updates to reporters, didn't have much to say Thursday.

A reporter suggested to Smoltz that he appeared to throw well. A smiling Smoltz replied, "Then you can report that."

MARLINS: Slumping Hanley Ramirez returned to the leadoff spot Thursday after spending three weeks batting third.

The former Augusta GreenJacket has hit .268 since moving from first to third in the order May 2, dropping his season average to .304.

Pirates: Shortstop Jack Wilson , out for seven weeks with a strained left calf, was examined by team doctors after playing in a minor league game and may return next week.

BREWERS: Closer Eric Gagne was diagnosed Thursday with rotator cuff tendinitis and is out indefinitely.

METS: Placed veteran outfielder Moises Alou, a former Augusta Pirate, on the 15-day DL with a strained right calf.

YANKEES: Pitcher LaTroy Hawkins was suspended for three games and fined $2,000 on Thursday by Major League Baseball, which said he intentionally threw at Baltimore's Luke Scott .

Hawkins asked the players' association to appeal, and the suspension will be delayed until the appeal is resolved.

On Tuesday, Hawkins threw a pitch over Scott's head and was ejected without warning. Scott and Hawkins began gesturing at each other, and both benches and bullpens emptied. No punches were thrown.

Earlier in the game, with the Orioles leading 9-0 in the third inning, Baltimore pitcher Daniel Cabrera hit Derek Jeter on the left hand with a pitch.

- Joba Chamberlain began the transition from setup man to starter with 35 pitches in two innings in Wednesday's 8-0 win over Baltimore.

He expects to throw about 45 pitches on Saturday.

INDIANS: Catcher Victor Martinez left Thursday's game against the Chicago White Sox with a left index finger injury.

ORIOLES: Third baseman Melvin Mora was out of the starting lineup Thursday night against New York, a day after being spiked in the right hand by Hideki Matsui .

Mora said he hoped to start tonight at Tampa Bay.

TWINS: Shortstop Adam Everett was placed on the 15-day disabled list Thursday with a strained right shoulder.

The Twins said infielder Matt Macri will be recalled from Triple-A Rochester today.



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