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March 14, 2010

Michael Kirkman avoids 'disaster'

Left-hander Michael Kirkman was grazed in the left ear by a one-hopper hit back at him in the seventh inning and is OK. But both pitching coach Mike Maddux and trainer Jamie Reed said Kirkman was one inch from a "disaster."

Kirkman went down as the ball bounded into right field, but he was back on his feet before the play had ended. After a meeting at the mound, he was removed and replaced by Clay Rapada.

The comebacker, which went for a double, was more painful because Kirkman was saddled with the loss in a 6-4 Dodgers victory.

-- Jeff Wilson

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