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BASEBALL EXTRA | AROUND THE LEAGUE

Red Sox Happy With Gordon in Relief

September 14, 1997| Times Wire Services

The Boston Red Sox apparently will not be looking for a bullpen closer this winter, even though they traded Heathcliff Slocumb to the Seattle Mariners in July.

Manager Jimy Williams said recently he has been impressed with the performance of converted starter Tom Gordon and probably will use him in the full-time closer role next year.

"I know it's not a lead-pipe cinch that he's going to be a terrific closer, but we feel pretty good about his chances to be a 35 to 40 save guy," pitching coach Joe Kerrigan said.

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The David Cone watch continues.

Cone's health is the most pressing issue facing the Yankees at the moment, now that they are a handful of games away from clinching the wild card. Although the results from Friday's workout were somewhat disappointing, Cone appeared in better spirits Saturday as he looked ahead to his next mound session Wednesday.

"I'm still pretty confident I can give it a go," Cone said. "I'm not there yet, but I'm moving in the right direction."

Cone, who has been on the disabled list since Aug. 19 because of mild tendinitis in his right shoulder, threw for about 30 minutes in the bullpen Friday.

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The Cleveland Indians' Kevin Seitzer underwent an emergency appendectomy Friday night in Chicago and will be released from the hospital today. He was expected to return home to Kansas City and rejoin the team Sept. 22.

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