Sosa is done for season

ORIOLES NOTEBOOK

Hampered by injuries, veteran finishes with .221 average, 14 HRs

Notebook

September 25, 2005|By Jeff Zrebiec | Jeff Zrebiec,Sun Reporter

A day after concluding that it would be best for troubled slugger Rafael Palmeiro to stay away from the team for the rest of the season, the Orioles and Sammy Sosa decided that Sosa's season is officially over.

Sosa has been at home in Miami since Sept. 7, rehabbing a toe injury, and he'll remain there while the Orioles finish out the season, his agent, Adam Katz, said yesterday.

"He is doing well and, basically, he's ready to go back to work, but by the time he got game ready, there might be a couple of games left," Katz said. "Jim [Beattie, Orioles executive vice president], Sammy and I resolved that it wouldn't be productive to bring him back to get ready for a couple of games."

Sosa finishes his first -- and likely only -- season as an Oriole with a .221 average, 14 homers and 45 RBIs, a disastrous year for a likely future Hall of Famer who is fifth all time with 588 career home runs.

Slowed by injuries, including the lesion on his right big toe that has kept him out of the Orioles' lineup since Aug. 25, Sosa was 5-for-50 in his past 15 games and hit .208 (52-for-250) with nine home runs and 29 RBIs since coming off the disabled list May 24 after the staph infection and abscess and the bottom of his left foot healed.

"I'm sure there was a lot of stuff that contributed to his lack of production for us," Orioles manager Sam Perlozzo said. "He was certainly in good enough shape and hits the ball well in batting practice. I look at him and every time he goes to the plate I feel good that he's going to do something. And it just didn't happen.

"He was a pleasure to be around and gave you 150 percent all the time and there were times where it looked like he was Sammy Sosa, but it just wasn't enough."

Sosa, 36, is a free agent after the season and there is very little chance that the Orioles will sign him. Katz, however, said he still plans to talk to the organization after the season ends.

"I anticipate Jim and I will revisit," Katz said. "I know they like Sammy very much and think he can be a productive player. We'll see.

"He's not one to feel sorry for himself or dwell on the past," Katz said of Sosa. "He feels good. He could go to work tomorrow. It just didn't seem to make that much sense."

Roberts gets MRI

A magnetic resonance imaging test on the left arm of injured second baseman Brian Roberts "confirmed everything we knew," said Orioles head trainer Richie Bancells.

Roberts has a torn ligament and a detached tendon in the elbow, but still hasn't decided on when he'll have surgery.

jeff.zrebiec@baltsun.com

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