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SPORTS
March 8, 2016
After all that, Chase Utley is safe. The two-game suspension imposed on the Los Angeles Dodgers infielder after his hard takeout slide broke the leg of Mets shortstop Ruben Tejada in last year's playoffs has been dropped. A person briefed on the decision told the Associated Press on Sunday that Major League Baseball and the players union reached an agreement that rescinded the ban. The person spoke on condition of anonymity because there was no announcement. The Dodgers declined comment, pending an official release.
SPORTS
March 8, 2016 | By Matt Breen, Staff Writer
CLEARWATER, Fla. - Daniel Stumpf said he is here to get lefthanded hitters out, and that's what he did on Sunday. The lefthanded pitcher retired both lefties he faced as Stumpf continued to make his case for a spot in the team's bullpen. Stumpf retired five of his six batters in a 6-5 win over the New York Yankees. His lone hit allowed was a ground-ball single. It was the first hit he allowed this spring in 32/3 innings. Stumpf struck out lefthander Didi Gregorius in the third inning and forced lefthander Dustin Ackley to fly out in the fourth.
SPORTS
March 7, 2016 | By Matt Breen, Staff Writer
DUNEDIN, Fla. - Aaron Altherr does not believe his left-wrist injury is serious and said it was "not even close" to the right-wrist injury he suffered two years ago that required surgery. The rightfielder missed Saturday's 9-6 loss to Toronto after injuring the wrist in the first inning of a 12-11 win over Atlanta on Friday. Altherr's left wrist was in a splint, and he had not yet had X-rays. Manager Pete Mackanin said Altherr was day to day. Altherr broke his right wrist in December 2013 after he slid into third base during a game in the Arizona Fall League.
SPORTS
March 7, 2016 | By Matt Breen, Staff Writer
DUNEDIN, Fla. - The Phillies will remain in Florida for almost four more weeks. Spring training, manager Pete Mackanin said, is a long time, and he said he does not expect anyone to be "really good" this early in camp. Not even his top pitcher, Aaron Nola, who on Saturday lacked the command that he appeared to master last season as a rookie. Nola allowed four runs - including a pair of homers - as he pitched the first two innings of a 9-6 loss to Toronto at Florida Auto Exchange Stadium.
SPORTS
March 6, 2016 | By Matt Breen, Staff Writer
CLEARWATER, Fla. - Aaron Altherr, who is expected to start in right field on opening day, left a 12-11 win over Atlanta in the first inning Friday with a left wrist injury. The injury occurred when Altherr attempted to make a diving catch on a line drive by the game's first batter. Altherr, 25, stayed in for the remainder of the inning and he even fielded another ball. He was lifted when the team returned to the dugout and replaced by Cedric Hunter, who provided the winning three-run homer in the ninth inning.
SPORTS
March 6, 2016 | By Ed Rendell, For the Daily News
THE PHILLIES have commenced spring training in the Grapefruit League and baseball is back! The best thing about spring training is that it signifies that warm weather is only a few weeks away. It also means that the start of the 162-game regular season is only a month away. It is one of baseball's most enduring truths that when spring training starts, hope springs eternal and every team dreams of winning the World Series. I've always maintained that Philadelphia fans are great sports fans - especially those who support the Fightin Phils.
SPORTS
March 6, 2016 | By Matt Breen, Staff Writer
CLEARWATER, Fla. - Maikel Franco ended last spring training by packing his equipment into a red duffel bag and walking across the Phillies complex to join the other minor-leaguers. Franco was quiet during his four weeks in big-league camp. He was the team's top prospect. But he was just a kid. A season later, Franco, 23, has emerged to become a large presence in a clubhouse filled with young talent. His personality was evident Friday afternoon as he danced while his teammates ate a pregame meal in the clubhouse.
SPORTS
March 5, 2016 | By Matt Gelb, STAFF WRITER
CLEARWATER, Fla. - It was 1972, and Chris Wheeler was 26 years old at his first spring training as an assistant in the Phillies' public relations department. His boss, Larry Shenk, approached him on the morning of the first exhibition game at old Jack Russell Stadium. The public address announcer was missing. Overserved the night before, Shenk figured. Could Wheeler do the PA that day? "Don't ever tell somebody you can't do it," Wheeler said this week. Forty-four years later, Wheeler is still the man with the microphone at Phillies spring training games.
SPORTS
March 4, 2016
Making a long-term commitment to Kolten Wong as their second baseman, the St. Louis Cardinals agreed Wednesday to a $25.5 million, five-year contract with the 25-year-old. Wong gets $1.25 million this year, $2.5 million in 2017, $4 million in 2018, $6.5 million in 2019 and $10.25 million in 2020. St. Louis has a $12.5 million option for 2021 with a $1 million buyout. He would have been eligible for salary arbitration next winter and for free agency after the 2019 World Series. "Now that I kind of have some kind of security, I understand that I can go out there and do different things and not worry about basically trying to play a good game every single game of spring training," Wong said.
SPORTS
March 1, 2016 | By Matt Breen, Staff Writer
CLEARWATER, Fla. - The University of Tampa baserunner never had a chance as he began his slide into second base and the ball was waiting to meet him. The right arm of Jorge Alfaro - the Phillies' top catching prospect - claimed another victim. Alfaro was acquired in July from Texas, but he missed the rest of the minor-league season with an ankle injury. An 8-3 exhibition win on Sunday helped unravel some of his mystery. Alfaro threw out Tampa's Matt Piatt by a few feet in the fourth inning.
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