Kansas City third baseman Alex Gordon is expected to be sidelined for three to four weeks with a broken right thumb.
Manager Trey Hillman said Sunday that Gordon probably will miss the Royals’ April 5 opener against Detroit, but the No. 2 overall pick in 2005 is optimistic about his chances of playing.
“That’s the way I’m taking it,” Gordon said. “... I really haven’t found out exactly the timetable and maybe if I can come back earlier or not.”
Gordon was injured when he slid headfirst on an attempted steal against Texas on Saturday.
The Minnesota Twins signed right-handed pitcher Nick Blackburn to a four-year, $14 million contract, including an $8 million club option for 2014. ... Dodgers catcher Russell Martin is expected to be sidelined for four to six weeks after a magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) revealed a pulled groin. ... Marlins center fielder Cameron Maybin strained his left groin during the eighth inning of the St. Louis Cardinals’ 7-4 victory over Florida in Jupiter, Fla. ... J.A. Happ and former Mariners prospect Phillippe Aumont combined for five scoreless innings in the Philadelphia Phillies’ 5-3 loss to the Tampa Bay Rays in Clearwater, Fla. Aumont, the No. 11 overall pick in 2007 by Seattle who was part of the Cliff Lee trade, gave up two hits in 22/3 innings. ... Pasco’s Jeremy Bonderman failed to make it out of the first inning in his second spring start, yielding Randy Ruiz’s grand slam in the Tigers’ 8-5 loss to Toronto in Dunedin, Fla. ... Arizona right-hander Brandon Webb played catch, but it’s unclear when the 2006 NL Cy Young Award winner, who is coming off shoulder surgery, will throw again. ... Twins closer Joe Nathan went back to Minnesota to get his surgically repaired right elbow checked out. ... Rain washed out several games in Arizona, including the Oakland -Angels game in Tempe, with about 50 Japanese media in attendance to cover Hideki Matsui’s debut with the Angels.