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Archive for Friday, August 6, 2004

Paper questions timing of Garciaparra’s injury

August 6, 2004

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— Nomar Garciaparra has come under renewed scrutiny after a published report raised questions about when the recently traded Boston shortstop hurt his right Achilles' tendon.

Garciaparra has never wavered, saying he was injured when struck by a ball in batting practice before an exhibition game March 5 against Northeastern at Fort Myers, Fla.

The Boston Globe, citing two sources familiar with Garciaparra's case, reported Thursday that the infielder told a different story to Red Sox officials, who never contradicted his story. One source said he was told that Garciaparra was injured before spring training.

Garciaparra's agent, Arn Tellem, called the assertion "totally, unequivocally, positively false."

Garciaparra, a five-time All-Star, was traded to the Chicago Cubs on Saturday.

"I've heard so much made up about me, I don't even want to comment," Garciaparra said Thursday before the Cubs played the Colorado Rockies at Coors Field. "I've addressed all those things. I'm here now, and that's all I'm focused on."

And Garciaparra sure seems happy with his new situation. He's light on his feet as he walks through the clubhouse. He pats teammates on the back in passing and smiles and greets reporters.

Red Sox manager Terry Francona and general manager Theo Epstein declined to comment on the Globe's report. They said the Red Sox had agreed with Tellem the night before to halt a public dispute that centered on Garciaparra's physical condition and why he and the team could not come to a contract agreement to keep him in Boston.

Epstein earlier had said he traded Garciaparra after the shortstop said he probably would miss significant playing time this month because of the injury. The day after the trade, Garciaparra denied saying that and repeated his denials to Chicago reporters in Colorado.

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