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BASEBALL / DAILY REPORT : ANGELS : Perez Is Able to Take Batting Practice

First baseman Eduardo Perez took batting practice Saturday for the first time since receiving a cortisone shot in his injured left wrist on Wednesday. He reported feeling no pain afterward but said the real test will come this morning.

“When I wake up, that’s the moment of truth,” said Perez, who sat out his ninth consecutive game because of a sprained ligament. “I’m confident. I’ve got to be. It’s a little tender where they shot it, but I think that’s more from the needle. The muscle feels good.”

Perez said his timing was a little off, but he also told Manager Buck Rodgers that his wrist felt better than at any time since the injury April 26 at New York.

There is no firm timetable for Perez’s return to the lineup. But, barring soreness this morning, Perez hopes to take batting practice again today. Then, he will have his wrist examined when the Angels return to Anaheim on Monday.

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J.T. Snow, playing at triple-A Vancouver, wasn’t recalled, further indication that his future is elsewhere.

Rodgers gave Jim Edmonds the night off and couldn’t use Perez, so he started Spike Owen at first, Owen’s first start at that position.

Owen, primarily a shortstop and second baseman, said his major league experience at first amounted to “about eight innings (in late-game replacement roles).”

He joked before the game that he was particularly concerned about hard-hit grounders on the Kingdome’s fast artificial turf. But he cleanly fielded his first chance, a slow grounder by Eric Anthony, and outran the Seattle leadoff hitter to the bag.

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Seattle’s Randy Johnson, 2-3 with a 6.00 earned-run average, will start today’s game instead of Roger Salkeld, who will start Tuesday against Kansas City.

The Mariners also sent reliever Jim Converse to their triple-A affiliate at Calgary. The Angels battered Converse for three runs and five hits in 1 1/3 innings in their 11-1 victory Friday.

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