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UMPIRES NOT PLEASED WITH ANGELS

BOSTON - Umpires working the series between the Red Sox and Angels at Fenway Park complained Thursday that Los Angeles coaches were "unprofessional and unbecoming" after two close calls went against them at the end of Wednesday night's 9-8 loss.

"Their deportment as we left the field, going through the Angels dugout, left a lot to be desired," plate umpire Rick Reed told the Boston Herald on Thursday. "We filed a report after the game, and I would think there will be a coach or two over there that would be regretting his actions today."

The Los Angeles Times reported that Major League Baseball was looking into it. Mike Port, baseball's vice president for umpires, did not return a call seeking comment.

"The World Umpires Association conducts itself in a professional manner, and we expect everyone in and around major-league baseball to do the same," union spokesman Lamell McMorris said. "We recognize that in the heat of competition folks get heated up and make mistakes. However, in this instance, we certainly look to Major League Baseball to address this matter in a manner that makes everything right."

Angels spokesman Tim Mead said the team has moved on.

Gomes' thoughtful gift

CINCINNATI - Jonny Gomes didn't exactly promise a home run but came through anyway.

The Reds outfielder presented Dayton Daily News baseball writer Hal McCoy with a pine-tar-covered bat Thursday. It had a hand-scrawled inscription on the black barrel and an intriguing story.

The Reds honored McCoy on the field before their 6-5 win over the Astros on Wednesday. The writer is retiring after his 37th season covering the Reds now that the newspaper won't cover the team.

Gomes, a former Ray, passed McCoy in the dugout before the ceremonies and chatted briefly. "He told me he'd try to hit a home run for me," McCoy said.

It was just a pleasantry, not a prediction. But he delivered, breaking a 3-for-24 slump with a homer in his first at-bat.

When McCoy walked into the clubhouse for pregame interviews Thursday, Gomes presented him with the bat he used for the homer. Gomes, who has 20 homers, wrote on the barrel: "To Hal, thanks for the support. HR 20 on Hal McCoy Day." He added the date.

Gomes made it clear this wasn't a case of calling his shot and delivering.

"I didn't tell him much," Gomes said. "I don't think it was like a fairy story. I hit a (homer), it was his day, and I gave him the bat I hit it with."

Bonds case: Federal prosecutors urged a federal appellate court to reverse a trial judge and let them present critical evidence they say shows Barry Bonds knowingly used steroids. Both sides fielded difficult questions from the three-judge panel of the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco. In a case stemming from Bonds' grand jury testimony in December 2003, the home run king pleaded not guilty to 10 counts of making false statements and one count of obstruction of justice. He is accused of lying when he testified that he never knowingly used performance enhancing drugs. At issue is whether evidence directly tied to Bonds' personal trainer, Greg Anderson, could be shown to the jury that will hear the case.

A's: RHP Brett Tomko is out for the rest of the season with nerve damage in his right arm.

Brewers: The team might shut down RHP Yovani Gallardo, who missed most of 2008 while recovering from surgery to repair a torn meniscus and a torn knee ligament.

Cardinals: RHP John Smoltz, who skipped his start Monday to calm tendinitis in his right shoulder, will start tonight against the Cubs. RHP Kyle Lohse, originally set to start, will be pushed back to work on mechanics.

Cubs:RF Milton Bradley left with left knee inflammation after singling in the sixth inning against the Brewers.

Mets: Rookie RHP Bobby Parnell was sent back to the bullpen.

Phillies: RHP Chan Ho Park (strained right hamstring) is out 2-3 weeks.

Rangers: RHP Tanner Scheppers, the team's supplemental 2009 first-round pick (44th overall), agreed to a minor-league deal with a $1.25 million signing bonus.

Royals: RHP Aaron Crow, their 2009 top pick (12th overall), agreed to a three-year deal with $3 million guaranteed.

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