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BASEBALL DAILY REPORT : DODGERS : DeShields Quickly Fits In With Team

March 09, 1994|MARYANN HUDSON

As quiet as Delino DeShields is, many of the Dodgers have grown attached to him, Mike Piazza said.

"Just to see the mood of the clubhouse after he got hit with that bat--you expect to see concern, but it was a somber mood," Piazza said. "Some guys just give out a certain amount of energy in the clubhouse and he has that aura about him. He is a very humble, soft-spoken individual who leads by his play. He is very quiet, but intense."

DeShields has continued to work out since his left cheekbone was broken when a bat flew out of Mike Busch's hands during batting practice a week ago. He missed Monday's workout, when he had outpatient surgery to pop the bone back into place, but was back in the clubhouse early Tuesday and participated in a light workout. After the swelling subsides, he will be fitted with a protective mask and is expected to be playing in games this weekend.

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Top outfield prospect Roger Cedeno, who had arthroscopic surgery last week on his knee, is expected to play again in three weeks, not one as reported Tuesday. Cedeno, 19, has risen through the ranks so quickly that--depending on the condition of his knee--he is scheduled to play in Albuquerque this season, with Los Angeles in the near future. Cedeno, a switch-hitter, hits mainly for average and plays center and left field.

"He is an amazing player," said pitcher Kip Gross, who played with Cedeno in winter ball. "He can do everything and he never even played baseball before. He was a track star."

Two winters ago, Dodger advance scout Phil Regan was managing in Venezuela and needed an outfielder.

"Roger was in Arizona at the Instructional League and I told Phil I would send him down there until his regular players arrived," Vice President Fred Claire said. "And he was like the guest who came to dinner and never left."

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The Dodgers lost, 3-2, to the New York Yankees in 12 innings at Ft. Lauderdale and have a 2-3 record this spring. Raul Mondesi, playing right field, threw out two baserunners. Darryl Strawberry, playing left field, misjudged a line drive that went over his head for a double. After the inning, fans heckled Strawberry, who took off his cap and stood at the edge of the dugout, smiling back at them.

"I know the fans got on him," Claire said. "I don't know whether there was taunting. He kind of tipped his cap to the crowd when he came in."

Sandy Koufax, who no longer works for the Dodgers, worked with Todd Worrell and Orel Hershiser. . . . Piazza, Eric Karros and Billy Ashley worked out with trainer Jeremy Subin in Redondo Beach during the winter to improve their flexibility, and it is showing in Karros' play at first base. He recently made a lunging stretch during a game to catch a ball thrown by Jose Offerman, which appeared to put him a third of the way toward second base. . . . Ramon Martinez will start today against David Cone and the Kansas City Royals at Vero Beach. Darren Dreifort and Worrell are also scheduled to pitch.

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