Dodgers ask Candelaria to camp


Baseball briefs:

* Lefthander John Candelaria has accepted an invitation to the Los Angeles Dodgers' spring training and will be competing for a bullpen spot. In 1990, Candelaria, 37, was 7-3 with a 3.39 ERA with the Minnesota Twins and 0-3 with a 5.48 ERA with the Toronto Blue Jays.

* Dodgers righthander Orel Hershiser took a small step towards the starting rotation yesterday when he faced hitters for the first time in 10 months and was satisfied with the results. Hershiser, who underwent reconstructive surgery on his right shoulder last April 27, threw 26 pitches to batters at Dodger Stadium.

* A fractured finger on his throwing hand will force left-hander Atlee Hammaker to miss the start of the San Diego Padres spring training camp. Hammaker suffered the hairline fracture of the middle finger, in a Feb. 7 weightlifting accident at his home in Knoxville, Tenn.

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