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Elbow surgery likely to cost Furcal all of '13

JUPITER — Cardinals shortstop Rafael Furcal will have ligament replacement surgery (Tommy John surgery) on his right elbow next week and expects to miss all of this year.

"It's very disappointing," Furcal said Wednesday. "I worked so hard in the offseason to get everything straight."

Furcal, 35, strained the ligament late last season and missed the playoffs. Instead of surgery, he rehabbed. But a bone spur complicated matters.

"It's tough to decide to get surgery because I want to keep playing," said Furcal, a 13-year veteran who hit .264 last year.

The club likely will turn to Pete Kozma or Ronny Cedeno.

White Sox extend Sale: The White Sox and All-Star lefty Chris Sale agreed to a five-year, $32.5 million extension. The deal includes options for 2018 and 2019. Last season, his first as a starter, the 23-year-old former Florida Gulf Coast University standout went 17-8 with a 3.05 ERA.

Scorpion sting: Brewers general manager Doug Melvin spent about three hours in a Phoenix emergency room Wednesday night after being stung on his left middle finger by a scorpion at his condo. Melvin said he believed he was picking up a spider, but his hand started swelling almost immediately. "I got nervous when all of the numbness started getting up in the shoulder area," he said. "You think, 'Can this thing go to your heart?' They said you can lose your breathing. Your vision can be a problem. None of that happened to me."

Astros: Philip Humber, who pitched a perfect game for the White Sox last year, gave up one hit in four innings against the Nationals in his second start. Humber was released by Chicago after going 5-5 with a 6.44 ERA last year.

Dodgers: Leftfielder Carl Crawford, dealing with nerve irritation in his surgically repaired left elbow, hit balls off a tee and remains hopeful he will be ready for opening day. He has yet to throw.

Marlins: Right-hander Ricky Nolasco was named the opening day starter. Also, Justin Ruggiano, considered the front-runner to start in center, hopes to make his debut Saturday. He has been out with a tight back.

Mets: Closer Frank Francisco, who had offseason surgery for bone spurs in his right elbow, said he hopes to make his debut in "two or three days."

Padres: Outfielder Donavan Tate, taken No. 3 overall in 2009, won't report to minor-league spring training today for "personal reasons." He missed time in 2010 with a shoulder injury and has twice tested positive for synthetic cannabis.

WBC: A 50-minute rain delay in the first inning interrupted a three-run rally by the Dominican Republic, but it tacked on, thanks in part to Jose Reyes' four hits and Hanley Ramirez's homer, to beat Venezuela 9-3 in their opener in San Juan, Puerto Rico. … Anthony Rizzo hit a two-run double off Giants closer Sergio Romo in the ninth and Jason Grilli escaped a bases-loaded jam in the bottom half to help Italy rally past Mexico 6-5 in Scottsdale, Ariz.

Elbow surgery likely to cost Furcal all of '13 03/07/13 [Last modified: Thursday, March 7, 2013 11:54pm]
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