- The Washington Times - Monday, June 13, 2005

Injured Washington Nationals second baseman Jose Vidro said he plans to join the club Saturday in Texas and resume workouts, meaning he could be activated by the end of the month.

Vidro, who tore a left ankle tendon sliding into home in a May4 game at the Los Angeles Dodgers, is progressing faster than the team expected. Vidro was examined yesterday by a foot specialist, and the latest timetable puts him on course for a return well before the July11-13 All-Star break.

Vidro, on the 15-day disabled list since May9, is targeting the June28 start of a home series with the Pittsburgh Pirates.

“The same guy saw me two weeks ago and noticed a big difference from back then and today,” Vidro said. “He suggested that I should be aggressive [in treatment] this week, and two weeks [from Tuesday] I should be out there playing.”

Before he was injured, Vidro was the Nationals’ No.3 hitter. The switch-hitter was batting .290 with six doubles, four home runs and 15 RBI.

Roster shuffle

Jon Rauch (shoulder) and Antonio Osuna (shoulder) have been transferred to the 60-day disabled list from the 15-day DL, allowing two newcomers to fill their spots on the 40-man roster.

Once a player is put on the 60-day DL, he no longer counts against a club’s 40-man maximum. Right-handers Ryan Drese and Jacobo Sequea, who were claimed off waivers, were added to the 40-man roster. Sequea was optioned to Class AA Harrisburg.

Drese was not used out of the bullpen against the Seattle Mariners, so he remains listed as the scheduled starter for Wednesday night’s game at the Los Angeles Angels.

The Nationals claimed Drese off waivers from the Texas Rangers on Friday. Drese, the Rangers’ Opening Day starter, was 4-6 with a 6.46 ERA in 12 starts.

If Robinson uses Drese out of the bullpen as an emergency measure tonight against the Angels, Sun-Woo Kim likely would start Wednesday. Kim pitched five innings in a start Friday and won’t be available as a long reliever tonight.

One eye better than none

Manager Frank Robinson said he will be in the Nationals’ dugout for tonight’s game despite undergoing vision correction surgery on his right eye this morning in Los Angeles.

“I’ll be able to see. I’ll get to the ballpark, but I can’t drive or anything like that,” Robinson said. “Unless [the eye surgeon] tells me no, I feel like I’ll be there.”

If Robinson is unable to manage tonight, bench coach Eddie Rodriguez would handle the managerial duties and roving coach Jack Voigt would slide into Rodriguez’s position.

An All-Star pitch

Nationals closer Chad Cordero secured his major league-leading 19th save with a 1-2-3 ninth.

He has had an All-Star caliber season thus far, but the pitchers are not chosen for the All-Star Game by the fans or their peers. The National League manager — Tony La Russa of the defending league champion St. Louis Cardinals — puts together the pitching staff.

“They are selected by the league manager, and I know how the process goes,” Robinson said. “Then, they’ll look around and say, ‘Well, some other pitcher deserves to be here more,’ or ‘They don’t have a representative, and they have a relief pitcher that is going pretty good. So rather than take Cordero, who deserves to be here, too, we’ll take this guy,’ and then [Cordero] is left off.

“So there is no guarantee as far as pitchers go. He has the numbers. He does the job, and that’s all he can do.”

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