Friday, August 17, 2001
Boone's recovery time shortened
By John Fay
The Cincinnati Enquirer
ST. LOUIS After X-rays revealed that Aaron Boone suffered a fractured wrist Wednesday, the time frame put on his return was two to four weeks. Thursday's update brought good news: It will be closer to two than four.
He thinks it will be sooner rather than later, Reds manager Bob Boone said after speaking to team medical director Dr. Tim Kremchek. Apparently, he broke it in a nice spot.
Aaron was put in a cast. He'll change to a splint within a week.
The difference between two and four weeks is big because only 6 1/2 weeks remain in the season.
The break was only 3 or 4 inches from the break in the hand Boone suffered May 14. That put him on the DL for four weeks.
We're going to have to invent something to cover that area for him, Bob Boone said.
CONTRACT TALKS: Agent Tom Reich will be in Cincinnati over the weekend because he represents Jose Rijo, who is returning to baseball after six years.
But Reich said his visit will cover more than the Rijo celebration. He also represents Jason LaRue, Aaron Boone and Dmitri Young.
There have been some talks (about long-term deals for LaRue, Boone and Young), he said. We'll talk this weekend, but nothing is imminent. The preference is (for the players) to stay with the Reds.
TALKS TOO: Reds scouting director Kasey McKeon said he received a contract proposal from No.1 pick Jeremy Sowers.
We hadn't heard from them since we made our offer, McKeon said. Now, we have something specific.
Sowers' proposal is in the $3 million range; the Reds offered $1.3 million. McKeon plans to talk with general manager Jim Bowden and structure a counteroffer.
The Reds structured the deal for last year's top pick, David Espinosa, as a major-league contract, so Espinosa had to be put on the 40-man roster.
DUNN BACK TO 2ND: After a game in the fifth spot, Adam Dunn was back in the No.2 hole Thursday.
That gave the Reds five left-handed bats at the top of the lineup Todd Walker, Dunn, Ken Griffey Jr., Sean Casey and switch hitter Dmitri Young.
Wednesday night, Boone had right-handed Brady Clark leadoff and Dunn fifth. But he still had the lefties bunched together.
I don't know how to break them up, Boone said. We'll just have to take our dose of (Steve) Kline medicine.
St.Louis lefty reliever Steve Kline had held left-handed hitters to a .104 batting average entering Thursday's game. Kline has not allowed a run in his last 23 games.
We'll take our chance with the first guy (right-hander Dustin Hermanson) and try to get the lead, Boone said.
They did. Walker led off with a walk and Dunn followed with a home run.
ONLY A SCARE: Austin Kearns was back playing Wednesday. He played both games of a doubleheader for the Gulf Coast Reds.
Kearns was forced to leave the second game of Tuesday's doubleheader with a sore right thumb.
That was the same thumb Kearns tore a ligament in, forcing him to miss 60 games. He had just returned Monday.
Kearns, the Reds' top draft pick in 1998, was their minor-league player of the year last season.
GOOD COMEBACK The fans sitting in center field at Busch Stadium are within easy shouting distance of Griffey.
He hears abuse from them quite a bit. He knew it would be especially bad Wednesday after he narrowly missed a diving catch and Cardinals center fielder Jim Edmonds made one shortly afterward.
They were, "He's a real center fielder,' Griffey said. I dropped the "Come back when he wins 10 straight Gold Gloves' on them.
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