Monday, April 26, 2004

Branyan traded, back with Cleveland

Baseball notebook

The Associated Press

CLEVELAND - Russell Branyan is back with the Cleveland Indians, who acquired the free-swinging outfielder on Sunday from the Atlanta Braves in exchange for a player to be named.

Branyan began his career with the Indians in 1994 and spent seven seasons in Cleveland's organization before he was traded to Cincinnati in 2002 for first baseman Ben Broussard.

He appeared in 11 games this season for Atlanta's Triple-A affiliate in Richmond, batting .179 (5-for-28) with one homer and four RBI.

Branyan had his best season with Cleveland in 2001 when he batted .232 with 20 homers and 54 RBI in 113 games.

In 2002, Branyan had a combined 24 homers and 56 RBI for Cleveland and Cincinnati.

The Indians said Branyan will report to Triple-A Buffalo on Monday.

MORE INDIANS: In a bid to bolster their bullpen, the Indians acquired right-hander Rick White from the Los Angeles Dodgers on Sunday for minor leaguer Trey Dyson.

White appeared in six games at Triple-A Las Vegas this season, allowing no runs in 11 2/3 innings.

He is 28-40 with 12 saves in eight major league seasons. He split last season between the White Sox and Astros, going 1-2 with one save and a 5.78 ERA in 49 games.

White is expected to join the Indians on Tuesday in Chicago.

Dyson, an outfielder, was hitting .179 with one home run and five RBIs at Single-A Kinston.

To make room for White, pitcher Jason Anderson was returned to Triple-A Buffalo. It was the Indians' third bullpen-related transaction in as many days.

CHICAGO: Yes, that really was Chicago White Sox general manager Kenny Williams in the Cubs' dugout. And no, he didn't get lost on his way to the ballpark.

Williams paid a surprise visit to Wrigley Field on Sunday morning to see his old friend, Cubs manager Dusty Baker.

"Dusty Baker called me yesterday (complaining) I don't keep in touch enough," Williams told surprised reporters as he made his way through the dugout 2 1/2 hours before the Cubs played the New York Mets.

Both Chicago teams are in town this weekend - the White Sox game started an hour after the Cubs - so Williams kept his visit short. He was in and out of the clubhouse in about five minutes, and then was off to the South Side for the White Sox's game against Tampa Bay.

"I asked him how'd he get in," Baker said, laughing. "I'm going to have to check security."

SHORT HOPS: The Milwaukee Brewers recalled reliever Victor Santos on Sunday and sent rookie starter Chris Saenz to Double-A Huntsville a day after his first major league win.

Saenz, called up to replace the injured Chris Capuano, threw 6 1-3 shutout innings in his major league debut Saturday against the St. Louis Cardinals. The 22-year-old right-hander struck out seven and walked three while giving up just two hits in Milwaukee's 3-1 victory.

Santos was 0-0 with a 3.48 ERA in three starts for Triple-A Indianapolis.

• The Montreal Expos optioned right-hander Jeremy Fikac and first baseman Luis Lopez to Edmonton of the Pacific Coast League on Sunday.

Fikac had a 4.66 ERA and no decisions in seven appearances, all as a reliever. Lopez was hitting .154 with just four singles in 26 at-bats.

The moves were made after Montreal's 2-0 win over Philadelphia. Neither player appeared in the game.

The team said more roster moves would be made today when they begin a six-game road trip.

• Baltimore's Rafael Palmeiro drove in his 1,703rd run Sunday, moving him past Reggie Jackson and into 17th place on the career RBI list.

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Branyan traded, back with Cleveland
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