Oswalt set for 1st start with Rangers on Friday
SAN DIEGO — Roy Oswalt will return to a major league mound Friday night in Texas, familiar ground for the veteran right-hander who started his career in Houston 11 years ago.
The 34-year-old Oswalt will make his debut for the Rangers at home against the Colorado Rockies after starting four minor league games since signing with Texas on May 29.
Oswalt’s last major league appearance was with Philadelphia in a Game 4 loss to St. Louis in the NL Division Series. He allowed five earned runs in six innings. He threw six shutout innings against Atlanta in his last regular season appearance last Sept. 27.
Oswalt said Wednesday he didn’t have as much soreness as he expected after his last minor league start, when he threw 100 pitches and allowed six hits and two runs in six innings Sunday for Triple-A Round Rock. He said he was regaining command of his curveball.
The Rangers figured it would be at least a month before Oswalt could pitch in a big league game after he went unsigned through free agency and the first two months of the regular season.
“I think I’m ready as far as arm strength. Body’s doing great,” said Oswalt, who was 1-1 with a 5.87 ERA in the four minor league starts.
Williams put on DL by Angels, Weaver activated
LOS ANGELES — Angels right-hander Jerome Williams was placed on the 15-day disabled list two days after suffering an asthma attack.
Williams was admitted to a hospital after his start Monday night against San Francisco because of dizzyness and shortness of breath from the suspected asthma attack.
“I didn’t feel any shortness of breath while I was pitching. I felt normal,” he said Wednesday at his locker. “It was probably a (combination) of asthma and anxiety. I felt dizzy and I just passed out. That’s all I remember. It came out of nowhere. It was real scary. They told me a lot of things at the hospital, but I couldn’t remember anything because I really couldn’t breathe.”
Williams, 30, lasted only 3 1/3 innings against the Giants, allowing four runs, seven hits and three walks. When he got back to the clubhouse, he felt dizzy and collapsed.
Detroit’s Valverde out with sprained right wrist
DETROIT — Detroit Tigers closer Jose Valverde has a sprained right wrist, but the team is hopeful the injury won’t keep him out too long.
Detroit trainer Kevin Rand says Valverde will use a wrist immobilizer for the next two or three days. The right-hander felt pain while warming up during Tuesday night’s win over St. Louis, and the Tigers brought Phil Coke in to close instead.
Manager Jim Leyland hasn’t named a specific closer to fill in for Valverde. Right-hander Joaquin Benoit has a 1.99 ERA in 32 appearances.
Valverde went all of 2011 without blowing a save, but he’s struggled this year. He has 13 saves in 16 chances with a 4.18 ERA, and he’s walked 17 hitters in 28 innings.
Braves’ Beachy to have Tommy John surgery
NEW YORK — Atlanta Braves pitcher Brandon Beachy is going to have reconstructive surgery on his right elbow Thursday, and will miss the rest of the season.
Manager Fredi Gonzalez made the announcement after the Braves beat the New York Yankees on Wednesday, hours after Beachy received a second opinion from Dr. James Andrews.
The 25-year-old Beachy was put on the 15-day disabled list Sunday, a day after leaving a start early. He is tied for the major league lead with a 2.00 ERA and is 5-5 in 13 starts.
Andrews has performed many of the ligament replacement operations known as Tommy John surgery. Recovery time for the injury normally takes 12-18 months.
Jair Jurrjens will be recalled from Triple-A Gwinnett to start Friday in Boston.
Hornets trade Ariza, Okafor to Wizards for Lewis
NEW ORLEANS — The New Orleans Hornets have traded forward Trevor Ariza and center Emeka Okafor to the Washington Wizards for forward Rashard Lewis and a second-round draft pick.
The Wizards said Wednesday they are sending New Orleans the 46th pick in this year’s draft, which originally belonged to Dallas.
Lewis is entering the last season of a six-year, $118 million contract and could be a candidate for the amnesty clause.
Okafor has never lived up to being the second pick in the 2004 draft. He averaged a career-low 9.9 points and 7.9 rebounds last season, missing time with a sore left knee. Ariza averaged 10.8 points and 5.2 rebounds.
The Hornets didn’t have a second-round pick. They also have the first and 10th selections in the first round.
Washington also has the second pick of the second round.
Roddick, Bartoli, reach quarters at Eastbourne
EASTBOURNE, England — Andy Roddick reached the quarterfinals of the Eastbourne tennis championships on Wednesday, needing eight match points to overpower Jeremy Chardy of France 6-2, 7-6 (6).
“You know, I served well. I returned pretty well. He served great on big points, but, you know, I stuck through there,” Roddick said.
The American has been seeded 30th at Wimbledon, where he has reached the finals three times.
“I’d resigned myself to the fact I wasn’t going to be seeded,” he said. “I mean, they can’t give me credit for three years ago. I was looking forward to trying to be a spoiler. That was a new position for me.”
Marion Bartoli of France reached the quarterfinals after defeating Aleksandra Wozniak of Canada 6-2, 6-2.
Ferrer, Schiavone reach quarters of Unicef Open
DEN BOSCH, Netherlands — Top-seeded David Ferrer beat Leonardo Mayer of Argentina 6-3, 6-1 on Wednesday to reach the Unicef Open quarterfinals.
Ferrer is playing his first tournament since losing to Rafael Nadal in French Open semifinals earlier this month. The Spaniard cruised past Mayer in an hour and next plays Igor Sijsling, the only Dutch player left in the grass-court prep event for Wimbledon.
Ferrer is seeded seventh for Wimbledon, which starts on Monday.
On the women’s side, Francesca Schiavone of Italy saved four match points during a 6-2, 2-6, 7-6 (8) victory over Irina-Camelia Begu of Romania.
From wire sources