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Prices rising for playoffs, not Series

World Series tickets won't cost more this year after doubling last season, but when it comes to the playoffs, prices are soaring like home runs.

Cleveland and Arizona became the first teams to announce their post-season prices.

The Indians said their top price of a ticket for the league championship series will be $85.

The Diamondbacks, leading the NL West in only their second season, are charging up to $100 for clubhouse seats for the league championship series.

Cleveland's rise is 42 percent from last year's top of $60, and 70 percent above the $50 charged for the best seats in 1997.

For the World Series, box seats will remain at $150 and $120, with reserved seats at $100 and $85, bleachers and general admission at $40 and standing room at $25.

Schilling goes on DL

The Phillies placed Curt Schilling on the 15-day disabled list Friday, retroactive to Sunday, because of recurring shoulder problems.

Saturday, Schilling gave up seven earned runs and eight hits in 6 innings against the Diamondbacks. He has been hampered by biceps tendinitis, mild bursitis and muscle spasms in his neck and shoulder blades.

Schilling will be eligible to be activated on Aug. 23.

HUNTER IMPROVES: Jim "Catfish" Hunter was slowly improving, although his condition still was listed as critical five days after he hit his head on concrete steps at his home. Hunter, 53, remained in the intensive-care unit, officials at Pitt County (N.C.) Memorial Hospital said. The Hall of Fame pitcher was conscious and responding to doctors and relatives.

ROYALS-METS TRADE: The teams exchanged minor-league pitchers with the Royals receiving Derek Wallace and Jeremy Jackson going to the Mets.

ANGELS: Walt Disney Co. has approached Orange County technology billionaire Henry T. Nicholas III about making a major investment in its sports teams, according to the Los Angeles Times. The discussions are the first sign that a possible sale of the Angels and the NHL's Mighty Ducks has moved beyond internal debate. . . . OF Darin Erstad was placed on the 15-day disabled list, retroactive to Wednesday, with a strained ligament in his right knee.

ASTROS: OF Richard Hidalgo was placed on the 15-day disabled list with inflammation of his left knee.

BLUE JAYS: LHP David Wells was scratched from his start because of a stiff back. Wells, who struggled with back problems during spring training, said his back stiffened Thursday.

DODGERS: LF Gary Sheffield will demand to be traded unless team officials "make big changes" in the off-season. "This isn't what I signed up for," he said.

EXPOS: President Claude Brochu has set Sept. 30 as the deadline for team partners to buy his 7.2 percent share, which is worth about $10-million.

INDIANS: CF Kenny Lofton, sidelined since Aug. 7 with a strained right hamstring, was activated from the 15-day DL. 3B Russell Branyan was sent to Triple-A Buffalo.

MARLINS: RHP Alex Fernandez is expected to miss one start after receiving a cortisone shot to treat inflammation in his right rotator cuff.

PADRES: 2B Quilvio Veras was placed on the 15-day DL with a strained right quadriceps.

RANGERS: OF Juan Gonzalez did not start for the third straight game because of a strained left hamstring.

ROCKIES: RHP Pedro Astacio was back on the field less than 24 hours after turning himself in to police following an alleged altercation with his estranged wife. Astacio was arrested on charges of third-degree assault, and is scheduled to pitch Sunday.

_ TIMES WIRES

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