Sports

Veteran Mussina put in bullpen

NEW YORK - After winning 247 games in the major leagues, Mike Mussina lost his spot in the New York Yankees' rotation Tuesday.

Following three terrible starts in a row, the 38-year-old right-hander was told by manager Joe Torre that he'll be passed over for his next scheduled start Saturday against Tampa Bay.

"He was disappointed, naturally. This was very difficult for me," Torre said. "We have relied on him every year since he's been here."

The Yankees will call up touted prospect Ian Kennedy, a first-round draft pick last year, from Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre to pitch against the last-place Devil Rays in the middle of a pennant race.

How long Kennedy stays in the rotation will depend on how well he pitches.

"It's basically what we're getting from that spot. That's what you look at first," Torre said.

Mussina refused comment as he walked out of the clubhouse following New York's 5-3 victory over Boston on Tuesday night.

n Cubs activate Soriano: Alfonso Soriano returned to the Chicago Cubs' lineup Tuesday night, hoping to give the first-place team a boost in the final five weeks of the pennant race.

"I think the team needs me and I need the team, too," Soriano said after he was activated from the 15-day disabled list.

Soriano suffered a small tear in his right quadriceps as he was running the bases Aug. 5 against the Cardinals at Wrigley Field. As he rounded second base, he pulled up lame and hobbled into third base where he was tagged out. He was put on the DL the next day.

Soriano said he wasn't worried about coming back too early. Initially he wasn't expected to return until around Labor Day.

Soriano, who signed a $136 million, eight-year contract with the Cubs in the offseason, is batting .297 with 18 homers and 42 RBIs in 104 games. He was put right back into the leadoff spot Tuesday night, playing left field.

n Orioles cut ties with Shuey: The Orioles cut ties with right-hander Paul Shuey on Tuesday, ending his comeback with Baltimore.

Shuey, signed to a minor league contract as a free agent in February, made it back to the majors for the first time since 2004 after undergoing hip surgery. He was 0-1 with one save and a 9.82 ERA in 25 games.

"We needed to make a move. We needed to try something different," Orioles manager Dave Trembley said. "He told me that he expected it. ... It's best for the team."

Shuey gave up nine runs in the final two innings of the Orioles' 30-3 loss to Texas on Aug. 22, capping the first 30-run game in the majors since 1897.

"It hurt to tell him he was done with us," Trembley said. "I thought he did so much more than just suck up some innings for us when a lot or lesser guys wouldn't have."

Shuey had already cleaned out his locker and departed the clubhouse before the Orioles began a three-game series with Tampa Bay on Tuesday.

n Selig lobbies for Marlins: Baseball commissioner Bud Selig met for the first time with city and county leaders Tuesday, hoping his influence will help the Florida Marlins' perpetual quest for a new ballpark.

Selig said he came away from the meetings satisfied the local officials want a new home for their baseball team.

"It was clear to me that all of us on the same page - we want to get a stadium deal done down here as expeditiously as possible," Selig said. "I would regard both meetings as very, very constructive."

The Marlins have been lobbying for a new home since the mid-1990s. The commissioner declined to discuss funding or sites, issues that have stymied three team owners, and he declined to set a deadline.

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