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Rays’ prospect offers apology

Associated Press


Tampa Bay prospect Delmon Young said Thursday that critical statements he made about the organization for not promoting him to the majors this month were not aimed at players on the last-place team.

“I never meant any disrespect to the Devil Ray players. I have nothing but the highest respect for these guys and I know how hard they have worked to get there,” the 19-year-old outfielder said in a statement.

“I am just so frustrated that the team would not give me the opportunity to play with and against the best players in the game, so that I could continue to learn and develop in the major league environment.”

Young was named Baseball America’s Minor League Player of the Year this week, and during a conference call with reporters he expressed unhappiness over not being promoted at the end of his season.

Asked why he felt he was not called up, Young replied: “The only thing I can think of is they’re being cheap.”

Bad news for Hampton

Atlanta left-hander Mike Hampton faces the possibility of Tommy John surgery.

Hampton, who has been sidelined since Aug. 20 with a herniated disc, traveled to New York and saw Dr. Dave Altchek. He confirmed the earlier diagnosis of the Braves medical staff that the source of Hampton’s forearm pain is coming from his elbow and that he might require reconstructive surgery.

Hampton is 5-3 with a 3.50 ERA this season, making only 12 starts because of four trips to the disabled list.

Percival will learn fate

Detroit Tigers closer Troy Percival will know soon if he can return next season or face that his career is over.

Percival, 35, has been sidelined since July 10 because of a muscle tear in his right forearm. The 11-year veteran, who has 324 career saves and joined Detroit as a free agent last winter, will meet with Los Angeles Angels team physician Dr. Lewis Yocum today. He should learn then if he has pitched his last game in the major leagues.

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