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Cal can't

Eldred left off White Sox postseason roster

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Latest: Tuesday October 03, 2000 04:00 PM

  Cal Eldred Cal Eldred: " I'm obviously disappointed. You feel the team is counting on you and you let the team down." Jonathan Daniel/Allsport

CHICAGO (AP) -- Cal Eldred figured he'd finally get a chance to be in the playoffs in his first season with the Chicago White Sox.

After a 10-year career plagued by arm problems, he was willing to do just about anything -- even pitch with a screw in his arm.

But Eldred's bionic-like comeback didn't quite make it. The veteran felt pain in his elbow on Monday when he was just playing catch and was left off the roster submitted Tuesday before the start of Chicago's first-round series against Seattle.

"I knew it was going to be sore. The question was how quick could I bounce back," Eldred said. "I was surprised at how sore it was. I'm obviously disappointed. You feel the team is counting on you and you let the team down."

Eldred, who had elbow ligament replacement surgery in 1995 while with the Brewers, had a 5-inch stainless steel screw surgically implanted near his elbow on Sept. 7 to support a stress fracture.

After not pitching in the majors since mid-July, he came back last week and threw 3 1/3 effective innings against Boston, hoping that would allow him to be ready for the playoffs. But his elbow didn't respond without pain.

"Obviously what it needs is a little more rest," Eldred said, adding that the screw will be there as long he wants to try and pitch. "It's like putting reinforcement in concrete."

Eldred talked to former Brewers teammate Mike Matheny, who also is missing the playoffs. St. Louis catcher sliced a finger on a knife last week.

"I was feeling sorry for myself, until I talked to Mike," Eldred said. "He was upbeat and thought it happened for a reason."

Eldred, acquired in an offseason trade, went 10-2 with a 4.58 ERA for the White Sox this season.


 
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