MLB notes: A-Rod 'looks forward' to poker probe

Yankees third baseman Alex Rodriguez steps out of a batting cage during a light workout as he...

Yankees third baseman Alex Rodriguez steps out of a batting cage during a light workout as he recovers from knee surgery at the team's minor league complex in Tampa, Fla., Aug. 4, 2011. (STEVE NESIUS/Reuters)

QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 9:37 PM ET

There are "numerous factual inaccuracies" in a story about Alex Rodriguez's alleged involvement in high-stakes, illegal poker games, the New York Yankee star's publicist says.

"Alex looks forward to co-operating with Major League Baseball's investigation," A-Rod's spokesman, Richard Rubenstein, said in a statement Thursday.

Asked if that meant Rodriguez had never played in any of the illegal poker games, Rubenstein said, "I'm sticking with my statement."

Among the allegations are that Rodriguez took part in poker games with actors Tobey Maguire, Leonardo DiCaprio, Ben Affleck and Matt Damon; that at times, cocaine was used at the table; and that at one of the games, violence nearly broke out when a player refused to pay off on sizable losses.

MLB investigators have not yet spoken with Rodriguez about his alleged involvement but are trying to set a date for an interview.

The New York Yankees third baseman is in Tampa rehabilitating his right knee, which required surgery July 11 to repair a torn meniscus.

He wore a light brace on the knee Thursday as he worked out.

"I feel good. A good day today," said Rodriguez, who didn't address the poker charges.

The 36-year-old was warned by MLB in 2005 to stay away from underground poker clubs.

Hart hot at leadoff

Right fielder Corey Hart is thriving batting leadoff of late for the Milwaukee Brewers, with five consecutive multi-hit games in that spot. He is 13-for-24 during the five games.

On Wednesday, Hart led off the first inning with a home run, the third time he has done so this season.

The versatile 29-year-old has been all over the batting order this season, with turns hitting No. 1, No. 2, No. 3, No. 5, No. 6, No. 7 and even No. 9.

Hart is batting .278 with 15 homers and 38 RBI for the Brewers, who were off Thursday.

Setback for Santana

New York Mets pitcher Johan Santana, rehabbing from surgery last year, has been diagnosed with left-shoulder fatigue.

Santana was scratched from a second minor-league rehab start this week and won't resume throwing until the shoulder improves, which might derail any chance of him pitching for the Mets this season.


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