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Finley Pinning Scant Hopes on Return for Postseason

August 31, 1997|MIKE DiGIOVANNA

Chuck Finley returned to the Angels this weekend with a cast on his left forearm and wrist and a look of uncertainty. He probably is out for the season because of a broken bone in his wrist, but he's holding out hope for a possible postseason return. If there is a postseason for the Angels.

"I'm not thinking I'm done, I'm not thinking I'm going to come back," Finley said. "I'm just kind of sitting on the Tarmac."

After Friday night's 3-1 victory over San Diego, Manager Terry Collins said Finley was "the biggest cheerleader on our bench."

Said Finley: "It's not a nice job to have, but I owe it to them to finish up the season, whether it's good, bad or whatever. It might be a pipe dream, but I want to stay close in case someone says I can start throwing in a few weeks."

The chances of that, Finley concedes, are slim.

"Doctors aren't very good liars, I can tell you that," Finley said. "I got back to the stadium after my MRI and the doctors all had their heads down. I said, 'It's not good, is it?' They said, 'No, it's not good.'

"I need to find a doctor who can be paid off or bribed. I bet you Dave [Hollins, whose X-ray and CT scan on his left wrist Friday were normal] was slipping the guy twenties as they were looking at his [X-ray] film, saying, 'I'm OK? Yeah, sure, I'm OK.' "


Giants' left-hander Shawn Estes impressed Collins on Saturday, giving up three runs on five hits in six innings to improve to 18-4. Rickey Henderson homered in the first inning--his major league-record 72nd leadoff homer--and Chad Kreuter doubled in two runs in the sixth, but that was all the Angels could muster.

"He throws 93 mph, his cutter runs into right-handed batters, and he's got a good curve for left-handers," Collins said. "He has a good move to first, comes quick to the plate out of the stretch. . . . He has the most complete stuff from a left-hander that I've seen outside of Randy Johnson."


Angel knuckleballer Dennis Springer suffered his second consecutive rocky outing Saturday, giving up five runs on eight hits, including homers by J.T. Snow and Jose Vizcaino, in four innings. Vizcaino also had an RBI double in the second. Springer was ripped for seven runs on six hits in six innings by Cleveland on Tuesday. . . . Hollins, who missed Friday's game because of a bruised left hand, returned to the lineup Saturday and had a bunt single in three at-bats.


3Com Park, San Francisco, 1 p.m.

TV--Channel 9. Radio--KTZN (710).

* Update--The Angels didn't lose any ground to the Seattle Mariners after Saturday's 7-3 loss to San Francisco, but that was hardly a comfort to Manager Terry Collins. "I don't care what Seattle does," he said. "If we don't win, they don't have to win another game. If we do our jobs we'll be fine. That's all we can worry about. The Mariners are a good team and they're going to win some games, but we just need to start playing well in all phases of the game." May, who replaced Chuck Finley in the rotation, will make his first start after 22 relief appearances. The left-hander started 13 games at triple-A Vancouver this season and threw a no-hitter against Salt Lake City.

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