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All-Star's yearlong absence nears end

BALTIMORE — Orioles 2B Brian Roberts will begin a minor-league rehabilitation assignment today, a significant step in his bid to return from a concussion that has kept him sidelined for more than a year.

Roberts, 34, last played in a game on May 16, 2011. Since that time, the two-time All-Star has languished on the disabled list.

Although he has taken batting practice and fielded grounders with the Orioles, playing in a game — albeit one with Double-A Bowie — is a far more legitimate test of his readiness to return to the big leagues.

Asked to describe his emotions, Roberts said Tuesday, "Excited. Scared. A little bit of everything. It's been a long time coming, for sure."

Roberts will travel to nearby Bowie for a game against Richmond tonight. His rehab assignment can last no longer than 20 days.

"I'm pretty sure we'll use the 20," he said. "It's been over a year and I need to get some at-bats."

CHAPMAN SUED: Reds LHP Aroldis Chapman, who defected from Cuba in 2009, has been sued for $18 million by a Cuban-American man who blames him for his imprisonment on the communist island.

The lawsuit, filed last week in Miami federal court, claims that Chapman falsely accused Danilo Curbelo Garcia of involvement in human trafficking, leading to his 2008 arrest and conviction in Cuba. Curbelo Garcia is serving a 10-year sentence.

FAN HONORED: The Reds made Caleb Lloyd, 20, the college student who got national attention for catching two home run balls Monday, an honorary captain for the game against the Braves. He and coach Billy Hatcher took out the lineup card, giving Lloyd a chance to tell his story to the umpiring crew.

FAN BEATING: Federal weapons charges were filed in Los Angeles against two men accused of brutally assaulting a Giants fan at Dodger Stadium during opening day last year. The criminal complaint filed against Louie Sanchez and Marvin Norwood charges both with being a felon in possession of firearms.

CARDINALS: RH reliever Kyle McClellan said he will not need surgery on his sore right elbow. … 3B Matt Carpenter left with an apparent injury after hitting a double in the first inning.

DODGERS: CF Matt Kemp, who went on the disabled list May 15 with a left hamstring strain, told that he expects to be activated when ready Monday.

NATIONALS: RHP Chien-Ming Wang, out all season with a hamstring injury, was activated off the disabled list and will pitch in relief. RH reliever Ryan Mattheus went on the DL with plantar fasciitis in his left foot.

PADRES: 3B Chase Headley did not start because of what manager Bud Black called "a lower back issue."

RED SOX: INF Kevin Youkilis was activated from the 15-day disabled list, and OF Ryan Sweeney went on the 7-day concussion DL. OF Scott Podsednik was called up from Triple-A Pawtucket.

ROYALS: 2B Chris Getz went on the 15-day disabled list after aggravating his rib cage injury. LH reliever Will Smith was called up from Triple-A Omaha.

TIGERS: INF/OF Ryan Raburn went on the bereavement list, and INF Danny Worth was called up from Triple-A Toledo. The team disclosed no further information on Raburn, a former Durant High standout.

TWINS: RHP Jason Marquis was designated for assignment, ending his stint with the team after seven starts.

WHITE SOX: Chicago police officers will get free tickets to a game as a thank you for their service during the NATO summit. … INF Orlando Hudson agreed to a major-league contract, and 3B Brent Morel went on the 15-day disabled list with a lower back strain. … 1B Paul Konerko, out since being beaned by Cubs RHP Jeff Samardzija on Friday, returned to the starting lineup.

All-Star's yearlong absence nears end 05/22/12 [Last modified: Tuesday, May 22, 2012 9:30pm]
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