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Ball hits Angels’ Hunter in nose, falls for inside-park home run

TEMPE – A stiff wind blowing out to center field made things difficult for the pitchers Wednesday. Torii Hunter had it worse, though.

The Angels center fielder had a ball deflect off his nose in the first inning, turning a drive by Jeff Baker into a two-run inside-the-park homer, but Los Angeles beat the Colorado Rockies 18-11.

Hunter tried to make a leaping catch at the wall but the ball hit the padding and struck him in the face. He had to leave the game. X-rays were negative.

“I thought he went head first into the wall. I think for the most part, his playing hard keeps him away from injuries. That was a fluke,” Angels manager Mike Scioscia said. “He wants to play (Thursday), but I don’t think we’re going to. We’ll give him a little time to (recuperate).”

Los Angeles starter Jered Weaver was hit hard again, giving up seven hits, six runs – five earned – and three of the homers in 4 1/3 innings. Weaver made his fourth spring start after a slight delay at the start of camp due to shoulder soreness. He was coming off his best outing, when he limited Arizona to one run and four hits in four innings Friday, but he has a 7.94 ERA.

“I thought his stuff did better than the results would show,” Scioscia said. “His arm felt great. His stuff was good. Just a couple of his fastballs they got out of here.”

Weaver was considerably better than Rockies right-hander Jason Marquis, who allowed 10 hits, 12 runs – 11 earned – with four walks over 3 1/3 innings.

Marquis, who was making his fourth Cactus League start and sixth appearance of the spring, has allowed 22 earned runs over his last 14 innings.

“It goes without saying, he’s still trying to get some things squared away,” Rockies acting manager Jim Tracy said. “He had a very good first inning. From there, he was doing a decent job of getting ahead of hitters but then he’d give the count right back to them. He got some pitches up and they hit him. When he gets pitches up, they hit him.”

Manager Clint Hurdle stayed in Tucson with the Rockies who were playing in a minor league game.

Baker finished 4 for 4. Baker’s homers were his first two of the spring. Ryan Spilborghs hit his fourth homer, Yorvit Torrealba his second and Sean Rodriguez his first.

Erick Aybar had four hits in five trips to the plate, raising his spring average to .389.

Citizen Online Archive, 2006-2009

This archive contains all the stories that appeared on the Tucson Citizen's website from mid-2006 to June 1, 2009.

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For all of the stories that were archived by the Tucson Citizen newspaper's library in a digital archive between 1993 and 2009, go to Morgue Part 2

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