An All-Star season that's already included his 100th home run got as little bit better for Jeff Blauser Friday night.
Then it turned worse Saturday.
Blauser collected his 1,000th hit with a fourth-inning single Friday, then didn't play Saturday because of a sore back. The injury has been bothering him for about two and a half weeks, but it isn't considered serious and he should return to the lineup tonight.
"He plays like you don't even know it," manager Bobby Cox said.
As for the standing ovation he received Friday, Blauser said, "It was nice, probably the nicest ovation I've ever received. I was almost a little embarrassed, actually. There are probably some people who thought I'd never reach 500 hits."
Blauser hit his 100th home on on Father's Day. His 1,000th hit came on his father, Gary's, birthday.
"I tried to call him after the game and he wasn't in," Blauser said. "Probably out celebrating his birthday somewhere."
First baseman Fred McGriff was in Saturday's lineup, but Cox is urging him not to push his sore right hamstring.
"He's this far from pulling it," Cox said. "He's got to be very careful."
McGriff's hamstring isn't the only part of his body that's aching. His left shoulder continues to bother him and he'll probably undergo arthroscopic surgery following the season, joining Denny Neagle (right shoulder) and Javy Lopez (left knee) in the operating room.
"I'm getting whirlpool, ultrasound and massages (on my hamstring)," McGriff said. "I've been here since 10:30 and I've still got to work on my shoulder. Some movements I make hurts more than others, but you've got to try and go play."
Meg Simpson, the daughter of TBS announcer Joe Simpson and a rising senior at Lassiter High School in Marietta, Ga., will be among 450 of the nations' best high school basketball players participating in the Reebok/WBCA Premier Basketball Camp at Washington University in St. Louis.
"Meg has worked real hard to get where she is and if she keeps improving she has a chance to be a pretty good player," said Simpson, who spent nine years with the Mariners and Royals.
Geraldine Thomas of McCaysville, Ga., will receive a $10,000 check from Goody's during a presentation before tonight's game. She won the money in the Goody's Jackpot Inning June 29th when Keith Lockhart hit a grand slam against the Phillies.
The 78-year-old Thomas will stay for the game, the first major league game she's ever attended.
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