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AROUND THE NL

MARLINS: Gary Sheffield had a home run and run-scoring single in a 6-5 win over the Reds. Sheffield has 18 RBI, most on the team. Sheffield's fourth homer tied Bobby Bonilla for the club lead.

PIRATES: RHP Jason Schmidt gave up three runs on seven hits, struck out three and walked one in three innings in his first game since March 3, before he had two days of tests that showed his heart sometimes stops beating momentarily while at rest. Schmidt was prescribed medication that speeds up his heart when necessary. Schmidt told doctors he sometimes became lightheaded during nonathletic activity, such as watching TV or driving a car. "It scares you," Schmidt said. "You never have any problems, and then I still have dreams about it. I watched a movie the other night about a guy who got a tumor, and I had bad dreams that night."

ASTROS: Craig Biggio was 3-for-4, including a home run, in a 4-3 victory over the Braves. Biggio raised his average to .348. Leftfielder Luis Gonzalez was ejected in the first inning by home plate umpire Jeff Kellogg for arguing a third strike. "They (umpires) said they'd have a quick trigger this year," Gonzalez said. "I was frustrated, he was frustrated. He was still out there and I was in the dugout."

DODGERS: Utility infielder Juan Castro will be used as a late-game replacement for second baseman Wilton Guerrero, third baseman Todd Zeile and shortstop Greg Gagne. "The guy is invaluable to us," manager Bill Russell said. "His hands are incredible. Really. He can help us anywhere." "This is my dream come true," said Castro, who leads the team with a .412 batting average. "My goal is to play every day, but right now, I'll play wherever they need me."

CUBS: Brooks Kieschnick, the club's first-round pick in the 1993 draft, likely will start in leftfield Opening Day at Florida. "They haven't told me anything and I'm not going to assume anything, but I think my camp has gone real well," said Kieschnick, who is hitting .400. "I would like to think that they feel it's my time to finally show what I can do in the big leagues."

GIANTS: Darrin Jackson had four RBI in a 6-5 win over the Cubs.

_ TIMES WIRES

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