ATHLETICS: Signed P Steve Sparks to minor league contract; assigned him to Double-A Midland.

BRAVES: Designated P Joe Dawley for assignment. Optioned 1B Mike Hessman to Triple-A Richmond.

CARDINALS: Activated 2B Fernando Vina and P Russ Springer from 15-day DL. Optioned former Orioles P Garrett Stephenson and P Dan Haren to Single-A Palm Beach.

CUBS: Recalled P Todd Wellemeyer from Triple-A Iowa, then optioned him back after yesterday's game to clear room on roster for P Juan Cruz, who will start today. Optioned P Jon Leicester to Iowa.

DODGERS: Optioned P Victor Alvarez to Triple-A Las Vegas. Activated P Kazuhiro Ishii from 15-day DL.

GIANTS: Activated LF Barry Bonds from bereavement list. Placed P Dustin Hermanson on 15-day DL, retroactive to Aug. 24, with sprained left intercostal muscle.

METS: Recalled P Jeremy Griffiths. Purchased contract of P Orber Moreno from Triple-A Norfolk.

PHILLIES: Activated P Mike Williams from bereavement list. Designated IF Tyler Houston for assignment. Recalled IF Nick Punto from Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre. Optioned P Geoff Geary to Single-A Clearwater.

RANGERS: Purchased P Mickey Callaway from Triple-A Oklahoma. Optioned P Rosman Garcia to Oklahoma.

ROYALS: Recalled P Brad Voyles from Triple-A Omaha. Optioned P Jimmy Gobble to Omaha.


NFL: Suspended Falcons LB Keith Newman four games for violating NFL's policy on anabolic steroids and related substances.

CARDINALS: Signed CB Emmanuel McDaniel. Waived LB Charles Burton, LB Tony Gilbert, TE Lorenzo Diamond, K Tim Duncan, C Steve Grace, DE Alton Moore, CB Rhett Nelson, WR Nathan Poole, RB Travis Prentice, FB Joshua Rue and G Tony Wragge. Placed DT Talifaia Atoe and CB Michael Stone on IR. Placed G Frank Garcia on reserve-suspended list.

EAGLES: Traded WR Freddie Milons to Steelers for conditional draft choice.

FALCONS: Waived C Kevin Dogins, DE Ronald Flemons, DE Reggie Grimes, T Robert Hicks, WR MarTay Jenkins, G Michael Moore, RB Jeff Chaney, LB James Cotton, T Dwayne Morgan, LB Tony Ortiz, QB David Rivers, CB Jason Waters, S Waine Bacon, WR Jon Olinger, DE Raymond House and LB Recardo Wimbush.

GIANTS: Placed LS Ryan Kuehl and K Mike Hollis on IR. Released FB Charles Stackhouse, WR Daryl Jones, TE Darnell Dinkins, DE Frank Ferrara, G Tam Hopkins, T Barrett Brooks, CB Rod Babers, DE Radell Lockhart, LB Josh Hotchkiss, S Clarence LeBlanc, CB Calvin Spears and P Steve Cheek.

JAGUARS: Released DE Marco Coleman, DT Chris Combs, WR Donald Hayes, FB Dan Alexander, CB Ike Charlton, G Drew Inzer and G-T Daryl Terrell. Waived TE Matt Cercone, S Abdual Howard, CB Willie Miles and CB Jason Olford.

JETS: Waived QB Marquel Blackwell, QB Todd Husak, RB Raymonn Adams, WR Phil McGeoghan, WR Carlos Rosado, CB Troy Grant, S Ralph Parent, DT Salem Simon, OF Michael Thompson and OT Chris Smith. Signed DB Jacoby Shepherd.

PACKERS: Released TE-LB Tony Donald. Waived OT Jerry Wisne. Waived T Reggie Coleman from IR.

RAVENS: Released DE Riddick Parker and LB Johnny Rutledge. Placed WR Randy Hymes on IR. Waived WR Marc Lester (Morgan State), WR Todd Devoe, WR Chisom Opara (Gilman), RB Ryan Brewer, TE Lamar Hill, T Lawrence Smith, DT Nate Bolling, LB Chris Brown, CB Arabin Justin, P Derrick Frost and LS Mike Solwold.

REDSKINS: Released QB Danny Wuerffel, QB Gibran Hamdan, RB Kenny Watson, DL Jonathan Brown, DL Andre Arnold, DL Mike Cecere, DB Larry Austin, DB Fred Booker, DB Jordan Younger, RB Robert Gillespie, OL Akil Smith and OL Brad Bedell. Placed LB Chris Clemons on IR.

STEELERS: Released OL Josh Burr, OL Jimond Pugh, OL Calvin Collins, OL Mike Cook, DE Jabari Issa, WR Brian Robinson, LB Terrence Robinson and DB Erik Totten.


NHL: Announced that free-agent D Oleg Tverdovsky, who played last season for Devils, is returning to Russia for next season.

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