Originally created 08/25/06

Braves lose reliever to appendectomy

After giving up four runs in a blown save Tuesday night, the real pain started a night later for Atlanta Braves reliever Danys Baez.

After experiencing abdominal pain, Baez was forced to undergo an appendectomy late Wednesday night at Atlanta's Piedmont Hospital, the Braves said in a brief release.

He was examined during the team's 5-4 loss and had the surgery afterward, at about 11:30 p.m., the team said.

The Braves placed Baez on the 15-day disabled list retroactive to his appearance Tuesday. Atlanta, idle Thursday, will decide who to add to its 25-man roster by tonight's 7:35 start against Washington.

The 28-year-old Baez and infielder Willy Aybar were acquired July 28 from the Los Angeles Dodgers in exchange for utility infielder Wilson Betemit. Aybar is also currently on the DL with a finger injury; he should be healthy by the upcoming weekend. Betemit's average has dropped, but he does have five homers since joining the Dodgers.

Baez had seven holds and no blown saves until Tuesday, when he inherited a 2-1 lead entering for his designated setup inning in the eighth. He walked two Pirates and gave up two hits, and all the baserunners wound up scoring.

Baez is 0-1 with a 5.40 ERA in 11 appearances. With the Braves and Dodgers combined this season, he's 5-6 with a 4.53 ERA in 57 outings.

RED SOX: An MRI exam on Manny Ramirez's right knee showed no structural damage, but the Boston slugger wasn't in the lineup for Thursday night's game against the Los Angeles Angels.

"Thankfully the MRI came back and everything's structurally clean," Red Sox manager Terry Francona said. "He does have some patella tendinitis, which we kind of knew already. So we eliminated some structural things that maybe worried us, which is good. Now we'll just see how he feels."

Wily Mo Pena started in left field and Kevin Youkilis batted in the cleanup spot.

METS: New York designated outfielder Ricky Ledee for assignment to make room on the roster for right fielder Shawn Green, who was acquired from Arizona on Tuesday.

In another move, the Mets transferred reserve catcher Ramon Castro from the 15-day disabled list to the 60-day DL.

BELLE SENTENCED: Former major league slugger Albert Belle was sentenced to three months in jail and five years of supervised probation for stalking his ex-girlfriend.

The 39-year-old Belle pleaded guilty in July to one felony stalking count.

He had initially been arrested and charged in February, then rearrested May 17 at his Scottsdale, Ariz., home after he again contacted the victim. He has been jailed since the second arrest, and received credit for time served only since he entered his plea.

Belle's former girlfriend told police in January that she discovered a Global Positioning System tracking device that had fallen off her car and that Belle had threatened her.


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