Glavine set to return


Published: Friday, September 1, 2006 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Friday, September 1, 2006 at 1:50 a.m.
DENVER - Mets left-hander Tom Glavine returns to the mound tonight in Houston for the first time in 16 days after being sidelined by a blood clot in his left shoulder.
Glavine is 12-6 with a 3.92 ERA this season. The two-time Cy Young Award winner has 287 career wins.
  • CARDINALS: Mark Mulder was put back on the 15-day disabled list on Thursday, a day after the Cardinals left-hander expressed doubt he will pitch again this season.
    Mulder allowed five runs in 1 innings Tuesday night against Florida, his second start since coming off the DL from a shoulder injury. He's 6-7 with a 7.14 ERA after entering the season as the winningest pitcher in the major leagues during the previous five seasons.
    Mulder might have surgery on the shoulder, which has not responded to extensive rehabilitation. He'll get a second opinion in the next few days.
    The Cardinals also recalled catcher Mike Rose from Triple-A Memphis. St. Louis has 14 position players and 11 pitchers, the breakdown the Cardinals usually have in the postseason.
    Gary Bennett sprained his lower back Wednesday night when he stretched to tag out a runner trying to score on a failed squeeze bunt.
    But manager Tony La Russa needed backup for Yadier Molina, forced into duty perhaps a bit ahead of schedule on Wednesday after missing the previous five games with an elbow injury. Outfielder John Rodriguez, who spent much of the season with the Cardinals, had been the prime candidate before Bennett's injury.
    "Without Gary Bennett we'd have brought up a position player," La Russa said. "But we were going to bring up Rose at some point in the next few days."
    Center fielder Jim Edmonds, who has been diagnosed with post-concussion syndrome, was not put on the DL. Edmonds has made one start since Aug. 15 and was not in the starting lineup on Thursday.
    La Russa refused to discuss Bennett's condition and declined to name a Sunday starter to replace Mulder in the rotation. Barring a trade, rookie Anthony Reyes is expected to start on Sunday. He was 4-6 with a 4.73 ERA before being optioned to Triple-A Memphis.
  • ASTROS: Right-hander Brandon Backe will have a ligament in his right elbow replaced, an operation that could sideline him until 2008.
    Backe, 3-2 with a 3.77 ERA, has been on the disabled list since Aug. 18 with a sprained elbow. He reinjured the elbow the previous day after missing 86 games with the same injury.
    Backe made two starts in April, then left his third start in San Francisco after two innings because of soreness in the elbow. He wound up on the 60-day DL and returned on July 22.
    He finished with eight starts this season.
    Dr. James Andrews will operate next Thursday. The expected recovery period is 12-16 weeks.
    "I've got a long road ahead of me, just getting back into the game," Backe said. "There was an option of just not pitching the rest of the year and taking the offseason off and letting it heal on its own, again, like I tried previously this year. I just felt like the better option was to go ahead and get the surgery."
    Backe was hesitant about having the procedure but was reassured by teammates Roger Clemens and Andy Pettitte, who have been operated on by Andrews.
    "Any time you go under the knife, you're going to be nervous," he said. "It was a tough decision, but in a sense it was pretty easy because I had already tried to do without surgery. The way I was feeling my last two starts, I just couldn't do it anymore."
    Also Thursday, the Astros recalled right-handed pitcher Matt Albers and outfielder Charlton Jimerson from Triple-A Round Rock.
    The 23-year-old Albers will be with the Astros for the second stint this season. He lost his only start, against San Diego on Aug. 3, allowing five runs in five innings. Albers had a 4.35 ERA in five appearances with the Astros.
    Albers returned to Round Rock on Aug. 4 and was 2-1 with a 3.96 ERA. He started the season at Double-A Corpus Christi and was 10-2 with a 2.17 ERA in 19 starts.
    The 26-year-old Jimerson also will make his second appearance with the Astros. He was also called up last September and appeared in one game without a plate appearance. This season in Round Rock, Jimerson is hitting .247 with 18 home runs, 27 doubles and 45 RBIs.
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