Former Mariners All-Star and Yankees outfielder Ichiro Suzuki said he had no soreness Sunday, one day after being involved in a traffic accident.
Suzuki was on his way home after Saturday’s spring training game against Detroit when the accident occurred a few miles from Steinbrenner Field in Tampa, Fla.
His SUV was totaled in the accident, Suzuki said. He had a green light when he was hit in an intersection by another vehicle. The driver of the second vehicle was cited by police.
“The car was turning left and turned into me,” he said. “I slammed on the brakes, but couldn’t do anything about it.”
Suzuki said his vehicle was struck almost directly in front toward the driver’s side.
VILLARREAL’S FAMILY SAFE
The Detroit Tigers say reliever Brayan Villarreal is not expected to leave spring training after his family escaped unharmed from a kidnapping attempt in Venezuela on Friday night.
Villarreal has remained with the team. Manager Jim Leyland did not want to comment further about the matter. “The less said, the better,” he said.
Villarreal, 25, went 3-5 with a 2.63 ERA last year in 50 appearances. The right-hander struck out 66 hitters in 542/3 innings.
Security back home has been a concern in recent years for Venezuelan players and their families because of a rising wave of kidnappings.
TOUGH TALK ON PENALTIES
Baseball players’ union head Michael Weiner says toughening penalties for drug violations will have to wait until the 2014 season.
“There are going to be talks. I don’t (know) what the result is going to be,” he said after meeting with the Baltimore Orioles as part of his tour of the 30 spring training camps.
The current sanctions have been in place since the 2006 season: 50 games for a first offense, 100 for a second and a lifetime ban for a third.
Commissioner Bud Selig held a news conference Saturday and said he wanted increased penalties as soon as possible.
FURCAL’S RETURN DELAYED
Rafael Furcal had hoped to make his spring debut Sunday. Instead, the 35-year-old shortstop was told to stop baseball activities.
Trying to come back from a torn ligament in his right elbow, the three-time All-Star has been told he must have more medical tests.
“He’s just not feeling good, kind of went in a bad direction,” St. Louis manager Mike Matheny said. “We don’t know the severity of it, but it wasn’t good news.”
Matt Garza will start the season on the disabled list because of an injured muscle in his side that is preventing the right-hander from throwing, and Jeff Samardzija will be the opening-day starter for the Chicago. … Cardinals manager Mike Matheny has a ruptured disk in his back. He is scheduled to have an epidural injection today to reduce inflammation and get a particle off a nerve.