Beltre sidelined with sore calf; Morales on track

Adrian Beltre's debut with his new team will have to wait a short while. Kendry Morales has reason to celebrate: He should be ready for the start of the season.

Beltre, the Rangers' new third baseman, will miss at least the first week of spring training games because of a strained right calf that is still bothering him.

Assistant general manager Thad Levine said the Rangers will be cautious with Beltre after an MRI showed an over-extension of the muscle but no tear.

Texas signed Beltre last month to an $80 million, five-year contract that can also include an additional sixth season for $16 million more.

The Rangers expect Beltre to be ready for the start of the season April 1 against Boston.

Angels manager Mike Scioscia said Morales should be ready to play by opening day. The slugger's 2010 season ended when he broke his leg while jumping on home plate to celebrate a game-ending grand slam.

Morales, a first baseman, is expected to see early spring action as a designated hitter. Should his recovery extend into the regular season and leave him at DH, Scioscia could be forced to alter what figures to be a set outfield of Vernon Wells in left field, Peter Bourjos in center and Torii Hunter in right in order to keep current DH Bobby Abreu's bat in the lineup.

"When (Morales) gets to 100 percent, he'll be out on the field," Scioscia said. "What the time table (is) for that to happen, remains to be seen. We've got a long way until opening day.

Scioscia added: "The last week, 10 days of spring training, hopefully he'll be in the rotation at first base."

Scioscia said Morales would hit every day if he needed, either during games or on practice fields, and the time needed for a player to be ready to play defense is less than the time it takes a hitter.


Minnesota outfielder Michael Cuddyer could miss the next few days because of a painful wart on his left foot.

Cuddyer tried to treat the wart himself with medication this winter, but it ended up getting infected.

Manager Ron Gardenhire says he told Cuddyer to take Friday's workout off and see how he feels today. It's possible Cuddyer will need a doctor to remove the wart, which would keep him out for a few days.


Cleveland Indians outfielder Trevor Crowe has soreness in his right rotator cuff, an injury that could cost him a chance to make the opening-day roster.

Crowe hasn't been able to participate in workouts and has been working with the team's training staff to strengthen the shoulder. He's competing for a backup spot, but it's unclear when he will be ready to play.

The Indians open exhibition play Sunday against Cincinnati.

"We have to get him healthy," manager Manny Acta said. "We're not going to have him out there until he's 100 percent ready to compete."

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