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BASEBALL / DAILY REPORT : ANGELS : Sanderson Slow in Coming Back

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The Angels won’t come out and say it, but they are not counting on the return this season of pitcher Scott Sanderson, who has been on the disabled list since June 6 because of a herniated disk in his lower back.

The seriousness of Sanderson’s injury and his age--the right-hander turns 39 on July 22--have slowed his progress.

“He’s a very dedicated, well-conditioned athlete who follows all of our directions,” trainer Rick Smith said. “But age is a factor. We can’t do the things we were capable of 10 years ago. But because of Scott’s determination, he has a good chance to pitch again some day.”

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Sanderson, who underwent back surgery in 1988, was injured while fielding an infield chopper in an exhibition game against the San Diego Padres.

He made seven starts, going 1-3 with a 4.12 ERA, before going on the disabled list.

“There’s a chance he’ll be back this season,” Manager Marcel Lachemann said. “But it’s going to take a while now. He’d have to rehabilitate his arm as well as his back.”

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The selection of reliever Lee Smith and shortstop Gary DiSarcina to the American League All-Star team will add $75,000 to the Angels’ payroll. Smith has a $50,000 all-star bonus clause in his contract, and DiSarcina has a $25,000 all-star clause.

Pitcher Chuck Finley and center fielder Jim Edmonds, who will also represent the Angels in the July 11 game at Texas, do not have all-star clauses in their contracts.

Smith also became the third player in major league history to be named to an All-Star team three consecutive seasons representing three different teams (St. Louis in 1993 and Baltimore in ‘94). The others were outfielder Bob Johnson (1942-44) and pitcher Goose Gossage (1976-78).

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X-rays on second baseman Damion Easley’s left forearm, which was struck by an Ariel Prieto pitch in Oakland Sunday, showed a contusion but no broken bones. Easley, who was not in the starting lineup Monday against the Blue Jays, will be available on a day-to-day basis. . . . Lachemann said it would take some “unexpected improvement” for designated hitter Chili Davis (strained hamstring) to return before the all-star break.

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