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Canadian Scheurwater hired as MLB umpire

(AP Photo/Carlos Osorio, File)

NEW YORK (AP) Stu Scheurwater has been hired by Major League Baseball to fill the opening on its umpire staff created by Dale Scott's retirement.

The 34-year-old Scheurwater had been a minor league umpire since 2007, worked big league spring training for the first time in 2013 and has appeared in 268 regular-season big league games as a call-up.

Scheurwater is from Regina, Saskatchewan, and becomes the first Canadian umpire on the full-time staff since Jim McKean from 1974-2001.

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MLB honors shooting victims in openers

Spring training got off to a solemn start as MLB teams wore hats to honor Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, where 17 people were fatally shot nine days ago.

Stoneman Douglas baseball coach Todd Fitz-Gerald and his two sons were guests of the Houston Astros for their spring opener against the Washington Nationals. Members of the school's baseball and softball teams were guests of the Marlins and mingled on the field with players, coaches and CEO Derek Jeter.

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Stanton walks, GIDP in Yankees debut

TAMPA, Fla. (AP) Aaron Boone walked to home plate for his first game as a manager at any level and was greeted by Detroit's Ron Gardenhire, a 60-year-old baseball lifer back in charge of a big league team for the first time in four years.

"I told him to go easy on me," Boone said. "I didn't want to look him in the eye - like Jedi mind trick on me or something."

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Cora not worried about JD Martinez deal

FORT MYERS, Fla. (AP) The Boston Red Sox have still yet to finalize their contract with prized free agent J.D. Martinez.

Manager Alex Cora said after Boston's Grapefruit League exhibition opener against Minnesota on Friday that he's not bothered by the delay and is simply focused on preparing the players he already has in camp.

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Cards' Carpenter dealing with tight back

JUPITER, Fla. (AP) Cardinals manager Mike Matheny isn't sure when first baseman Matt Carpenter will make his Grapefruit League debut.

Carpenter is battling back tightness. For the time being, he is in the hands of the Cardinals' medical staff, who will determine when Carpenter can return to the field.

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2 minor leaguers get 50-game suspensions

NEW YORK (AP) Baltimore third baseman Jaime Estrada and Los Angeles Angels pitcher Andrew Vinson have been suspended without pay for the first 50 games of the season under baseball's minor league drug program.

Estrada was suspended for a positive test for Strychnine, the commissioner's office said Friday. The 22-year-old spent the last two seasons with the Orioles' Gulf Coast League team and hit .240 with one homer and three RBIs in 50 at-bats over 23 games last year.

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Yelich makes spring debut for Brewers

PHOENIX (AP) New Milwaukee Brewers outfielder Christian Yelich struck out twice in his spring training debut Friday when the Brewers hosted the Chicago Cubs in a split-squad game.

He also singled before departing after the fourth inning.

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Mets' Callaway sits 1B Smith for opener

PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla. (AP) Mickey Callaway had his first big managerial decision Friday, and it came down way before the New York Mets' first pitch was delivered by starting pitcher Zack Wheeler.

A day before when the Mets announced their lineup for their Grapefruit League opener against the Atlanta Braves, prized first baseman Dominic Smith was scheduled to bat cleanup.

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Rasmus getting fresh start with Orioles

SARASOTA, Fla. (AP) Colby Rasmus is making a new start with the Baltimore Orioles after taking an eight-month break from baseball.

Rasmus signed a minor league contract with the Orioles this week, after abruptly leaving the Tampa Bay Rays in midseason. The contract is for $3 million if he makes the Orioles and contains up to $2 million in incentives.

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