Injuries could sideline Bonilla deal Giants' Javier on DL, Manwaring hurting

ORIOLES NOTEBOOK

July 18, 1996|By Buster Olney | Buster Olney,SUN STAFF

Injuries to players who may be part of the possible deal between the Orioles and San Francisco Giants eventually might kill any chance of the trade being made.

According to National League sources, the Orioles and Giants discussed a trade that would have sent slugger Bobby Bonilla to San Francisco for catcher Kirt Manwaring, pitcher Mark Leiter and outfielder Stan Javier.

However, on Tuesday night, Javier severely strained his right hamstring and was placed on the disabled list. The Giants said he'll be out three to four weeks, but Javier said after the game that he felt his hamstring pop and expects to be out longer than that.

Manwaring had X-rays on his ribs yesterday, and no fractures were found. But Manwaring has been hurting since he ran into a dugout railing chasing a foul ball last weekend. Leiter is healthy but struggling; he has allowed more homers than any other pitcher in the majors.

The chances of the deal going through were at their zenith late last week, as the Orioles were beginning their four-game series with the New York Yankees, league sources said. A trade that would bring several veterans in return may not be as attractive to the Orioles now that they've fallen so far behind New York.

There is no doubt, however, of the Giants' interest in acquiring Bonilla. A source within the San Francisco organization indicated that the Giants intended to try to work out a multi-year deal with Bonilla, bat him fifth and play him at first base.

Giants left fielder Barry Bonds, a friend and former teammate of Bonilla's with the Pittsburgh Pirates, said yesterday that he's all for the move.

"I'll believe it when I see it," Bonds said. "You've got to get a big hitter, and Bobby likes playing in the NL.

"We're competitive. We like to outdo each other. We did it in Pittsburgh. . . . It doesn't make sense if you're not going to sign him for next year."

Giants GM Bob Quinn said: "I think teams are comparative shopping. Everybody is sparring. The main event is at the end of the month [July 31 trading deadline]. The rest is preliminaries."

Should the Orioles continue to fall in the standings, they probably will be more inclined to ask for young players, one- or two-year major-leaguers or minor-league prospects.

The Orioles have talked to San Diego, which is searching for offense, and the Padres' strength is minor-league pitching, with Double-A left-hander Heath Murray the most attractive of the lot.

The Orioles also have the option of hanging onto Bonilla for the rest of the year, and, should he sign somewhere else as a free agent, they would be entitled to a draft pick as compensation, assuming they offer him arbitration.

Injury updates

Roberto Alomar was out of the Orioles' starting lineup for the fourth straight game last night, and he's still being held out of batting practice.

Manager Davey Johnson said he doesn't know when Alomar, who is suffering from a sprained left right finger, will be ready to return full-time.

Reliever Arthur Rhodes' sore shoulder is a little bit better, but he won't pitch for another day or two, Johnson said.

Around the horn

B. J. Surhoff became the sixth Oriole to start in left field this season. "It's time to get somebody to stand up and say, 'I want this position,' " Johnson said. . . . Johnson on the division race: "I still think we have a chance, so I'm going to play the guys who I think are the best chance of winning a game for us." . . . Outfielder Tony Tarasco, who had shoulder surgery last month and is out for the year, showed up for his rehabilitation in Florida weighing 240 pounds. After Orioles farm director Syd Thrift talked to him, Tarasco lost 18 pounds in about 10 days. . . . Jeffrey Hammonds has eight hits in his last 18 at-bats for Triple-A Rochester. . . . The Orioles have signed all but two of their nine picks from the first 10 rounds of the draft. Not yet in the fold are Mark Seaver, the fourth-round pick from Wake Forest, and No. 7 selection Ed Schoening, a high school pitcher from Columbus, Ga.

Pub Date: 7/18/96

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