New York Yankees Manager Lou Piniella today named Butch Wynegar as his No. 1 catcher for this coming season over Ron Hassey.
Wynegar was bothered by injuries and batted only .223 last year. Hassey batted .296 with 13 homers and 42 RBI in 92 games.
Hassey won the confidence of then-manager Billy Martin. But Piniella restored Wynegar to the No. 1 spot in spring training camp in Fort Lauderdale, Fla.
Citing Wynegar's injuries as a major reason for his slump at the plate, Piniella said he also felt the switch-hitting, 30-year-old receiver was superior defensively to Hassey.
*Braves: In West Palm Beach, Fla., Atlanta Manager Chuck Tanner said outfielders Brad Komminsk and Billy Sample will spend time at third base, Bob Horner will take grounders at first and third base and Ken Oberkfell will work at second and third in training camp.
The Braves' Dominican Republic scout, Pedro Gonzales, said pitcher Pascual Perez will arrive Wednesday. Perez reportedly had visa problems.
Outfielder Claudell Washington told team officials he will be a day late because of drug rehabilitation responsibilities in Oakland.
*Phillies: Pitcher Kent Tekulve, 38, is ready to make the move from late-inning specialist to middle relief that Philadelphia Manager John Felske has in mind for him. Tekulve's job will be holding the opposition until Steve Bedrosian or Don Carman takes over, Felske said.
"I'm here to help the team and I'll be glad to do what they want me," said Tekulve in Clearwater, Fla. "I need to pitch often to stay sharp, and if middle relief is what's in store, I'm ready."
*Indians: In Tucson, Cleveland Manager Pat Corrales said Jerry Willard has overtaken Chris Bando as the No. 1 catcher.
Last year, Bando, 30, was bothered by injuries and hit .139 in 73 games. Willard, 26, proved himself in the final two months of last year, finishing with a .270 batting average in 104 games.