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Saturday, March 19, 2005; Page D07

Seattle's Richie Sexson hit his first home run since April -- a mammoth shot that traveled nearly 500 feet -- and he's trying to take it in stride. "We're still talking about spring training," Sexson said yesterday after the Giants beat the Mariners, 4-3. "I had a good solid approach and took a good swing at it."

Sexson tore the labrum in his left shoulder last May, prematurely ending his stint with the Diamondbacks. This spring he is hitting .185, but has five hits in his past nine at-bats. . . .



"If you didn't know that he played baseball, you would think he was a big guy who was probably captain of the debate team or running for congressman, or something like that."

-- Outfielder David Dellucci, on Rangers teammate and first baseman Mark Teixeira, who is the only starting infielder on the team never to have played in an all-star game. Michael Young, Hank Blalock and Alfonso Soriano are the other infielders.

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Jose Lima will start for the Royals on Opening Day in Detroit, where the 32-year-old's major league career almost ended.

The Tigers cut him in September 2002, and he opened the 2003 season pitching for the Newark Bears, an independent minor league team. The Royals picked him up in June of that year.

Lima insists he's not looking for payback. "Probably a couple of years ago, yeah," he said. "But I don't carry any grudges any more." . . .

Padres ace Jake Peavy left yesterday's game against the Rangers with a strained groin.

Peavy, who led the major leagues with a 2.27 ERA last year, came out after retiring Andres Torres on a fly ball for the second out of the fifth inning. He will be reevaluated today.

-- From News Services

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