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Maddux's Blister Changes Rotation

October 03, 2002|Jason Reid

ATLANTA — Greg Maddux's blister problem prompted the Atlanta Braves to alter their pitching plans with the team trailing, 1-0, in the best-of-five series.

The four-time Cy Young Award winner, scheduled to start Game 2 today, has been bumped to Game 3 on Saturday in San Francisco, switching places with fellow right-hander Kevin Millwood because of a blister on the index finger of his pitching hand. Giant left-hander Kirk Rueter faces Millwood today, and right-hander Jason Schmidt is scheduled to start Game 3 at Pacific Bell Park.

Although Maddux said he was able to pitch, Manager Bobby Cox said he needs at least two days' extra rest to help the blister heal. Maddux said he probably could not come back on three days' rest to start in a possible Game 5 because of his blister.

"Do I feel confident that I can go out there? Yes I do," Maddux said. "Do I feel I could come back a day early if I had to? That's where the concern is."

Maddux said the blister affects all of his pitches except the changeup.

Millwood, who last pitched Friday against the New York Mets, is fine with the move that keeps him on normal rest and puts him in a big situation.

"We know we definitely can't take these guys lightly," he said.

"We all know what we have to do, it's just a matter of going out and doing it now."

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