- The Washington Times - Tuesday, March 3, 2009

From combined dispatches

Barry Bonds‘ perjury trial has been delayed at least through July and likely beyond as an appeal filed by prosecutors over key evidence for the trial winds through the legal system.

Federal court officials Monday set a schedule for prosecutors and Bonds’ lawyers to submit legal written arguments to the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals debating the admissibility of three positive drug tests, so-called doping calendars and other evidence reportedly linking Bonds to steroids use.

Jury selection for Bonds’ trial had been scheduled to start Monday but was delayed last week after federal prosecutors announced they would appeal U.S. District Court Judge Susan Illston’s ruling barring them from showing that evidence to a jury.

Bonds has pleaded not guilty to lying to a grand jury in 2003 when he testified that he never knowingly used performance-enhancing drugs. The home run king faces 10 counts of making false statements to a grand jury and one count of obstruction of justice.

Prosecutors are to file their opening brief June 1, the defense’s response is due July 1 and prosecutors can submit a rebuttal by July 15. The appeals court could then decide the issue solely on the written materials or put the item on its next available court calendar for oral arguments.

YANKEES: CC Sabathia made 14 pitches in both innings against Hideki Matsui and Kevin Cash in a simulated game in preparation for his first spring training start Friday night.

“Just trying to get a feel for it, the first time throwing to guys without a [pitching] screen up,” Sabathia said. “It felt good.”

Sabathia’s fastball looked strong, but he considers his cutter a work in progress.

“It usually takes a while for it to get right,” Sabathia said. “I’ll keep working at it, and hopefully it will be ready for the season.”

MARINERS: Now that Ken Griffey Jr.’s swollen knee has calmed down, he is ready to play in his first game for Seattle in a decade.

The 39-year-old slugger hit for about 10 minutes against two Class A pitchers in a simulated game. Mariners manager Don Wakamatsu then confirmed Griffey will make his spring debut, as planned, at designated hitter Wednesday night against Australia’s national team.

TIGERS: Manager Jim Leyland said starting pitcher Jeremy Bonderman, who was sent back to Detroit because of medical concerns about his pitching shoulder, was fine and will be back on the mound before the team goes north in about five weeks.

Leyland spoke after hearing reports that Bonderman was on his way back to Florida.

Bonderman, who hasn’t pitched in a game all spring, had shoulder stiffness and Leyland said the right-hander was sent back to his regular physician in Detroit only as a precautionary measure.

MARLINS: Florida’s bid to build a new ballpark in Miami has stalled again.

Miami-Dade County Mayor Carlos Alvarez said that until city officials can decide whether they want the new stadium in Miami’s Little Havana neighborhood, county officials will no longer work on the deal. Alvarez called the political climate that surrounds the proposal “toxic.”

City commissioners are expected to take up most of the stadium agreement Friday. In February, city commissioners met for 7 1/2 hours without reaching a final decision on the plan to build a 37,000-seat stadium.

OBITUARY: Tom Sturdivant, who pitched the New York Yankees to victory in Game 4 of the 1956 World Series on the day before Don Larsen’s famed perfect game, has died. He was 78.

Sturdivant threw a complete game in a 6-2 win against the Brooklyn Dodgers on Oct. 7, 1956, to even the best-of-seven series at 2-2 and set the stage for the only perfect game in World Series history. Whitey Ford, Sturdivant, Larsen, Bob Turley and Johnny Kucks threw five straight complete games in that series - a feat that hasn’t been accomplished since.

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