© 2007 MLB Advanced Media, L.P. All rights reserved.
05/11/07 8:01 PM ET
Notes: For Sosa, court's in session
Affable outfielder acclimating himself to clubhouse
By T.R. Sullivan / MLB.com
ARLINGTON -- Sammy "The Hanging Judge" Sosa roared through the Rangers clubhouse on Friday afternoon. Few could escape his wrath, including himself. Sosa fined himself $200 for an unknown transgression, the first case that was brought up in the Rangers first kangaroo court session of the season. Sosa, Kenny Lofton and Kevin Millwood served as a three-man tribunal for all transgressions -- frivolous and otherwise -- during the traditional baseball morale booster. "I was just trying to be a mediator and keep the peace," Lofton said. "Sammy's tough. He's the max. He'll put you down quick." "Believe it," Sosa confirmed. "But I fined myself $200 right out of the shoot. If I fine myself $200, I'm going to get somebody else." The $200 was the highest fine of the day. The rest were $125 or less. But the Rangers made up for it in volume. "In the beginning they were issuing some serious fines," manager Ron Washington said. "But they calmed down in the end." The Rangers hold such sessions on occasion throughout the year and the money is saved for a team party at the end of the season. "The more money, the better the food," Lofton said. "I think Sosa wants good food. I think he wants caviar the way he's going." Millwood, Tejeda on target: Millwood threw in the bullpen on Friday and had no problems with his hamstring. He is still on track to come off the disabled list on Monday and pitch against the Angels. "Everything was great," pitching coach Mark Connor said. "He's going to throw [Saturday] and pitch on Monday." Robinson Tejeda's spot in the rotation falls on Monday but he'll get an extra day and pitch on Tuesday against the Tampa Bay Devil Rays. Washington said the Rangers won't push him further back than that. "There's no chance of that," Washington said. "He's scheduled to pitch on Tuesday and unless something unforeseen happens, he's going on Tuesday." Manager's view: With their 14-run outburst on Thursday, the Rangers are now fifth in the American League in runs scored. That's not what concerns Washington. The Rangers went into Friday's game last in the American League in team defense to go with the third-highest team ERA in the league. That's what's concerning Washington. "The key from here on out is we have to pitch and catch the ball," Washington said. "We can't worry about our offense. If we pitch and catch the ball, I'll take our chances." Pitchers grab the bat: Rangers pitchers are starting to take batting practice this weekend in anticipation of facing the Houston Astros in National League-style games next week. But Washington is more concerned about them getting down bunts rather than swinging the bat. He won't forbid them from swinging the bat like he did in Spring Training. But he is still concerned about injuries that might occur when a pitcher starts swing the bat. "Any opportunity they have to bunt, I'm going to have them bunt," Washington said. "They all told me they were good hitters, but they haven't swung in a long time and I don't want any pulled rib muscles. I'm going to protect them as much as I can." Young back: Shortstop Michael Young was back in the lineup on Friday after missing Thursday's game with a sore hamstring. He and Mark Teixeira had played in 287 straight games together. According to Elias Sports Bureau, that's the third-longest streak by two teammates in the past 25 years. Miguel Tejeda and Terrence Long played in 456 straight games for Oakland in 2000-03, and Jeff Bagwell and Craig Biggio played in 389 straight games together in 1995-98. Teixeira played in his 481st straight game on Friday night. On Saturday, he'll tie the club record of 482 set by Alex Rodriguez in 2001-03. Catalanotto watch: Frank Catalanotto, on the disabled list with biceps tendinitis in his right arm, is still able to take batting practice but has not resumed throwing yet. The Rangers are waiting for the pain and discomfort to subside completely and for the arm to return to full strength. Catalanotto is eligible to come off the disabled list on Tuesday but Washington said the Rangers may have him take a rehabilitation assignment in the Minors. He said it: "We're not under pressure. We all want to do well. Nobody is going to put more pressure on us than ourselves." -- First baseman Mark Teixeira Thursday's Minor stars: Top performances from Thursday's Minor League games: Gold: Infielder Micah Furtado went 3-for-4 with a double and three RBIs in leading Bakersfield to a 10-6 victory over Inland Empire. Silver: Outfielder K.C. Herren was 3-for-3 with a double, triple and an RBI and third baseman John Whittleman was 3-for-5 with a double in Clinton's 4-3 loss to Burlington. Bronze: Triple-A Oklahoma lost to Las Vegas, 17-16, in 10 innings. Ramon Vazquez was 4-for-7 with a three-run home run in the top of the 10th that gave the RedHawks a 16-13 lead. Marlon Byrd also had four hits. Coming next: Right-hander Kameron Loe pitches against right-hander Bartolo Colon for the Angels at 2:45 p.m. CT Saturday at Rangers Ballpark in Arlington. The game is being broadcast regionally by FOX.
T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.