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Tampa Bay Rays' Joe Maddon picks Don Wakamatsu and Trey Hillman for All-Star coaches

DENVER — NL manager Charlie Manuel went for baseball royalty in naming St. Louis' Tony La Russa and Los Angeles' Joe Torre coaches for the July 14 All-Star Game. AL manager Joe Maddon went for two young guys kind of like, well, Joe Maddon in naming Seattle first-year manager Don Wakamatsu and Kansas City second-year manager Trey Hillman.

"I'm always aware of my roots and where I come from," said Maddon, the Rays manager.

Maddon has known Wakamatsu since the early '80s, and has worked baseball camps and coached in the Angels minor-league system with him. "I've always been impressed," Maddon said. "His mind for the game, he's very organized. I thought it would be a great opportunity for him being in his first year in Seattle to come to the All-Star Game."

Maddon hasn't known Hillman for long but likes what he has seen, and thought the Royals should be represented since the game is in St. Louis.

Maddon couldn't take Texas' Ron Washington, who was a coach last year, and didn't pick his mentor, the Angels' Mike Sciosica, because he'll be involved in next year's game in Anaheim.

Maddon gets to bring the Rays' six full-time coaches: Tom Foley, Steve Henderson, George Hendrick, Jim Hickey, Dave Martinez and Bobby Ramos, plus bullpen C Scott Cursi.

MLB chose Toronto's George Poulis and Oakland's Steve Sayles as trainers.

Canseco plans suit

NEW YORK — Jose Canseco plans to file a class-action lawsuit against Major League Baseball and the players' association, saying he's been ostracized for going public with tales of steroids use.

Canseco said he has discussed the suit with lawyers and intends to enlist Sammy Sosa and Rafael Palmeiro.

Canseco said the basis would be "lost wages — in some cases, defamation of character.

"Baseball blackballs you from their family, meaning you can't have a future proper reference from them, a job, no managerial jobs, no coaching jobs, nothing."

MORE DRUG NEWS: A congressional committee will look into Sosa's denial that he used illegal performance-enhancing drugs in light of a report that he tested positive in 2003. The chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, Rep. Edolphus Towns, D-N.Y., says the committee takes seriously suggestions that a witness had been misleading. In 2005, Sosa told Congress he had never taken illegal performance-enhancing drugs. The New York Times reported Tuesday that Sosa tested positive two years before his appearance at a House hearing.

Ivan rodriguez sets record: The Astros' Ivan Rodriguez surpassed Carlton Fisk to set the record for games caught with No. 2,227 Wednesday. "I'm still feeling the same way (as) when I was 19," said Rodriguez, 37. "I love this game. I love what I do."

ex-player gets 45 years: Former OF Mel Hall was sentenced to 45 years in prison after being convicted in Fort Worth, Texas, of raping a 12-year-old girl he coached on an elite basketball team. Hall, 48, was convicted on three counts of aggravated sexual assault and two counts of indecency with a child.

astros: LHP Mike Hampton went on the 15-day disabled list with a left groin strain, the 12th trip to the DL in the former Crystal River standout's 15-year career. Former Ray Brandon Backe will take his start tonight.

blue jays: The team plans to put ace RHP Roy Halladay (strained right groin) and LH closer Scott Downs (strained big left toe) on the DL today.

Rangers: SS Omar Vizquel matched Hall of Famer Luis Aparicio for most hits by a player from Venezuela (2,677).

yankees: SS Derek Jeter did not play because of a sore left ankle. Ramiro Pena filled in.

Information from Times wires was used in this report.

Tampa Bay Rays' Joe Maddon picks Don Wakamatsu and Trey Hillman for All-Star coaches 06/17/09 [Last modified: Thursday, June 18, 2009 12:13am]
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