Valenzuela's problem is minor


Cardiologist Larry Santora, who performed an angiogram on California Angels left-hander Fernando Valenzuela yesterday, said the 30-year-old pitcher has a very rare -- but minor -- heart condition that would not affect his baseball career.

Valenzuela has been placed on oral medication and is scheduled to undergo another treadmill (stress) test next week to measure the drug's effectiveness. He could be pitching again within two weeks.

* GIANTS: San Francisco released pitcher Rick Reuschel, apparently ending a major-league career that spanned nearly 20 years.

The 42-year-old right-hander has spent most of the season on the disabled list after failing to completely recover from arthroscopic surgery on his left knee last July. He was 0-2 in four games this season.

"He's had it," Giants manager Roger Craig said. "He can't pitch anymore. The guy's 42 with a real bad knee."

* DODGERS: Darryl Strawberry, still bothered by a shoulder injury sustained more than a month ago, was placed on the 15-day disabled list.

The injury, which has caused him to miss 12 games, was diagnosed as a mild separation of the left shoulder, but he now is suffering from inflammation in the shoulder.

* COMMISSIONER: The American League's designated hitter rule would be declared dead if baseball commissioner Fay Vincent had his way.

"I can't identify the source of the interest, but a fair number of American League owners would drop it. There's nothing going on right now. I think, at some point, we're going to get rid of it," Vincent said.

* WHITE SOX: Bo Jackson has made "significant progress" recovering from a severe hip injury and has been given the go-ahead to give up his crutches. Chicago's doctors said he is on the course they set for him and will be evaluated again by the All-Star break.

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