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Originally published Saturday, July 18, 2009 at 12:00 AM

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MLB Notebook | Rangers release Orlando Hernandez

Orlando Hernandez's comeback bid with the Texas Rangers is over, after the club released the veteran pitcher.

ARLINGTON, Texas — El Duque's comeback attempt with the Texas Rangers has ended.

Texas released Orlando Hernandez from his minor-league contract Friday, making the right-hander a free agent just more than a month after he signed.

Hernandez was 2-0 with a 2.45 earned-run average in eight relief appearances for AAA Oklahoma. He had 12 strikeouts and four walks in 11 innings.

"The reports that we got were about what you would expect, stuff-wise. ... The velocity was not an issue or anything like that, just rust," Rangers general manager Jon Daniels said.

Hernandez last pitched in the majors for the New York Mets in 2007, before toe surgery.

He won World Series rings with the New York Yankees in 1998, 1999 and 2000, and with the Chicago White Sox in 2005. He was the 1999 ALCS MVP.

The Cuban pitcher's age has been questioned. Some say he is 43. The Rangers said he was 39 when they signed him last month.


• The Yankees voided the signing of an amateur from the Dominican Republic after he flunked a DNA test that showed he misrepresented his name and identity. Damian Arredondo claimed to be 16. Major League Baseball investigators said his name and age were false.

• Boston activated 3B Mike Lowell and designated SS Julio Lugo for assignment.

• OF Jose Guillen missed Kansas City's game because he was late returning from the Dominican Republic, where his son was ill.

• St. Louis infielder Khalil Greene was sent to AA Springfield, Mo., to begin a rehab assignment. He is on the disabled list for the second time this year with social anxiety disorder.

• Pitcher Greg Maddux became the sixth former Braves player to have his number retired, joining Hank Aaron, Eddie Mathews, Dale Murphy, Phil Niekro and Warren Spahn.

• Cubs OF Alfonso Soriano has a dislocated right pinkie finger and isn't sure when he'll return to the lineup. The team scratched LHP Ted Lilly's scheduled start today because of his sore left knee.

Copyright © 2009 The Seattle Times Company

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