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Smoltz’s shoulder still questionable

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Posted: July 5, 2007 7:49 p.m.
Updated: July 20, 2007 5:00 a.m.

    ATLANTA — The Atlanta Braves say the results of an examination on John Smoltz’s sore right shoulder may not be known until Monday.

    Smoltz left the team in Los Angeles on Wednesday to return to Atlanta for a Friday meeting with Braves doctors about persistent discomfort in the shoulder.

    Smoltz will miss Tuesday’s All-Star game in San Francisco as well as Saturday’s scheduled start at San Diego.

    On Thursday, Houston Astros pitcher Roy Oswalt was named to replace Smoltz on the NL All-Star team.

    The 40-year-old Smoltz, who has lost three of five starts since tweaking his shoulder on May 29, will use the All-Star break to get treatment and rest. He will meet with doctors Friday to discuss what type of test is appropriate.

    ‘‘We won’t hear anything until at least (Friday) evening and probably not until Monday,’’ said Braves spokesman Brad Hainje on Thursday. Smoltz said he plans to return to the rotation for a start on July 17 — giving him 12 days between starts.

    ‘‘It’s best to get home, let them examine me and then they’re going to decide what the next step is going to be for me,’’ Smoltz told MLB.com as he was walking off the field following batting practice on Wednesday. ‘‘I’ve got to maximize this time, and this is the best window of opportunity.’’

    Smoltz (9-5, 3.07 ERA) got the decision in an 8-2 loss to the Dodgers on Monday night after giving up three runs and seven hits over six innings and striking out six.

    Braves manager Bobby Cox says he doesn’t plan to put Smoltz on the disabled list.

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