The MLB Players Association plans to file a grievance soon on behalf of Baltimore Orioles pitcher Sidney Ponson, who was put on unconditional release waivers on Thursday. The Orioles hope to void the remaining $10 million of his three-year, $22.5 million deal signed prior to the 2004 season.

"I would imagine there will be something by early next week," said Mike Weiner, general counsel for the players' union.

It may take a couple of months before Ponson's case is ruled on.

Palmeiro Is Out

Orioles first baseman Rafael Palmeiro's MRI exam taken on Friday revealed a strained muscle behind his ailing right knee. He won't rejoin the team in Boston. . . .

It has taken almost four months, but lefty reliever Steve Kline has finally started to put up the numbers the Orioles had expected when they signed him to a two-year, $5.5 million contract this offseason. In the past 151/3 innings, Kline has allowed just two earned runs, which has lowered his ERA to 4.42.

"I'm enjoying the game again," Kline said.

It was no secret that Kline and former manager Lee Mazzilli did not have the best working relationship. Is it a coincidence that Kline's resurgence comes after Mazzilli's firing on Aug. 4?

"I wouldn't say yes or no to that," Kline said. "That's a maybe. The guy is not here to defend himself. I don't want to say anything." . . .

Orioles pitcher James Baldwin was admitted to Massachusetts General Hospital after he fainted on the team plane on Thursday night. He rejoined the club but team doctors advised him to check back into the hospital for further examinations. He likely will remain there until Monday.