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Selig, union may discuss stiffer drug penalties

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. — Commissioner Bud Selig wants tougher penalties for major-league players who violate the sport's drug agreement.

Players association head Michael Weiner said the union is willing to discuss changes but only ones that would start in 2014.

The situation surrounding last year's positive drug test of 2012 All-Star Game MVP Melky Cabrera and allegations players received banned substances from a now-closed Florida anti-aging clinic helped lead Selig to seek stiffening of penalties quickly, the commissioner said at a news conference Saturday.

He declined to give specifics, saying league executive vice president Rob Manfred and Weiner will meet.

Weiner said Monday that some players have expressed support for tougher penalties. Selig said he was encouraged by Weiner's comments.

"The players have been discussing whether changes in the penalties are warranted since the offseason," Weiner said Saturday. "As I've said throughout spring training, there's a variety of player views on this subject."

SANTANA IFFY: Mets left-hander Johan Santana is becoming "less and less likely" to be ready for the team's opener against the Padres on April 1, general manager Sandy Alderson said. Santana was scheduled to throw batting practice Tuesday, but pitching coach Dan Warthen said the session had been canceled. Santana remains on a long-toss program and likely will throw from 150 feet today.

TROUT'S AGENT UPSET: The Angels renewed the contract of American League rookie of the year Mike Trout for $510,000, prompting an angry response from the outfielder's agent. Craig Landis said his client was disappointed with the decision. The salary is $20,000 above the major-league minimum.

World Baseball Classic: Two-time defending champion Japan rallied to beat Brazil 5-3 in Fukuoka, Japan. … Andruw Jones had two hits to help the Netherlands upset South Korea 5-0 in Taipei, Taiwan. … Chien-Ming Wang pitched six shutout innings to lead Taiwan past Australia 4-1 in Taipei.

ASTROS: Former Rays first baseman Carlos Peña hit his first home run with his new team in a 6-5 victory over the Braves.

BREWERS: Third baseman Aramis Ramirez left a game against the Angels with a left knee strain. It was the team's third significant piece of injury news, after right-hander Yovani Gallardo was scratched from his scheduled start today with tightness in his groin and leftfielder Ryan Braun was rested with a bruised left knee.

CARDINALS: Manager Mike Matheny was back in the dugout one day after dealing with food poisoning and a herniated disc.

GIANTS: Right-hander Tim Lincecum was scratched from a start against the Cubs because of a blister on his right middle finger.

INDIANS: All-Star closer Chris Perez hopes to recover from a shoulder injury in time for the April 2 opener at Toronto. The right-hander was diagnosed Friday with a strained muscle in his pitching shoulder, an injury that could sideline him for a month.

ROYALS: Right-hander Aaron Crow, a 2011 All-Star, agreed to a $1.28 million, one-year contract that represents the maximum 20 percent cut.

Selig, union may discuss stiffer drug penalties 03/02/13 [Last modified: Saturday, March 2, 2013 9:00pm]

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