Sports Briefs 8-3-14

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CLEVELAND -- Jim Thome's point-the-bat hitting stance, a powerful symbol of the most successful era in Cleveland Indians history, is now a permanent fixture at Progressive Field.

The Indians honored their career leader in home runs on Saturday by unveiling a statue of Thome -- his bat pointed menacingly at the pitcher -- to rest in the ballpark's center field monument area.

An emotional Thome, who played for Cleveland from 1991-2002 and again in 2011, said he signed an honorary one-day contract with the team so he could retire as a member of the Indians.

"It feels so good to be home again, in this ballpark, where it all began," Thome said as voice cracked several times. "It gives me goose-bumps."

Thome's statue is just the second erected by the club, joining one for Hall of Fame pitcher Bob Feller. Thome will certainly join Feller in Cooperstown one day.

Thome, who last played in 2012 for Baltimore, hit 337 homers for Cleveland. With him in the lineup, the Indians won six AL Central titles, advanced to the World Series in 1995 and 1997 and played in front of 455 consecutive sellout crowds.

"I look at that statue and I think of our teams in the '90s," he said. "There are so many guys from those teams who could have a statue."

"I want to thank the fans," he said. "I'll never forget the atmosphere you guys created here every night."

Thome signed his one-day contract on the field before the game and was given a long standing ovation by the crowd. He threw out the first pitch to former teammate Sandy Alomar Jr., the Indians' first-base coach.

"There's an old saying in baseball," said Mike Hargrove, who managed Thome for nine seasons in Cleveland. "Good players can make a manager, a general manager and a hitting coach look real smart. Jimmy did his part."

Thome developed an especially close relationship with Charlie Manuel, who was his hitting coach and later his manager with the Indians.

"He's like my son, in a way," Manuel said. "Cleveland got better when Jim Thome came to town."

Thome belted 52 home runs in 2002, the club record for a season. In 2001 he hit 49 homers -- the most by a left-handed hitter in club history -- and drove in 124 runs, both career highs.

Several of Thome's former teammates were in attendance this weekend, including Kenny Lofton, Carlos Baerga and Travis Hafner. John Hart, who built the Indians' team in the 90s as general manager, was also on hand as well as several members of Thome's family.

• Baseball

House recalled: The Cleveland Indians have recalled left-hander T.J. House to start against the Texas Rangers.

House was set to pitch Saturday night.

The Indians optioned right-hander Austin Adams to Triple-A Columbus. He had no record and a 10.80 ERA in three relief appearances.

House is beginning his third stint with the Indians this season. He is 1-2 with a 4.50 ERA in 11 games.

House allowed six runs in 3 1/3 innings against the Rangers on June 9. He has made nine starts at Columbus, where he was 1-4 with a 3.79 ERA.

WIlson back from DL: The Los Angeles Angels have activated left-hander C.J. Wilson from the 15-day disabled list. He's scheduled to start against Tampa Bay on Saturday night.

The Angels also announced Saturday they optioned outfielder J.B. Shuck to Triple-A Salt Lake.

Wilson will make his first appearance since July 9. He has been sidelined with a sprained right ankle.

Wilson is 8-6 with a 4.33 ERA and last won June 24 against the Minnesota Twins.

Goldschmidt out: Arizona Diamondbacks All-Star first baseman Paul Goldschmidt has a fractured left hand and is headed to the disabled list.

Goldschmidt, runnerup in National League MVP voting last season, was hurt when he was hit by a pitch from Ernesto Frieri in the ninth inning of Friday night's 9-4 loss to the Pittsburgh Pirates. The Diamondbacks have placed Goldschmidt on the 15-day DL and there was no word on how long he is expected to be sidelined.

Hart to miss time: Seattle Mariners designated hitter Corey Hart is back on the disabled list, this time with a bruised right knee.

Hart was placed on the 15-day DL Saturday at the same time Seattle activated left-hander James Paxton from the 60-day DL. Paxton was slated to start against the Baltimore Orioles on Saturday night.

To make room on the 40-man roster, right-hander Blake Beavan was outrighted to Triple-A Tacoma.

• Elsewhere

Record crowd: Ashley Young scored twice in the first half, and Manchester United beat Real Madrid 3-1 on Saturday in front of the largest crowd to see a soccer game in the United States.

The crowd of 109,318 at Michigan Stadium broke the previous U.S. mark of 101,799, set at the Rose Bowl for the 1984 Olympic final.

Gareth Bale scored for Real Madrid, but the European champions finished winless in three matches at this event.

Dillion takes checkered: Austin Dillon pulled away on the final restart to win the Truck Series race on Saturday at Pocono Raceway.

Dillon raced to his first Truck victory of the season. His win came a week after his brother, Ty, won the Nationwide Series race at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

Dillon eluded Clint Bowyer and the rest of the field on the final restart of a caution-filled end to the race.

Subban resigns: The Canadiens have agreed to terms with defenseman P.K. Subban on an eight-year deal.

A day after an arbitration hearing that would have led to a one-year contract, the team and Subban reached accord Saturday on a long-term arrangement.

Subban, who already has a Norris Trophy and Olympic gold medal, would be under contract through the age of 33. He had 10 goals and 43 assists last season, and has 42 goals and 125 assists in his NHL career.

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