LEADING OFF: Vlad takes his cuts, Braves hit the road
A look at what’s happening around the majors today:
Vladimir Guerrero Jr. and the Blue Jays wrap up their four-game series at Yankee Stadium, a day after the slugger hit three home runs and a double despite a nasty gash in his right hand.
Accidentally spiked while playing first base, Guerrero got two stitches after a 6-4 win and said his hand felt fine. He anticipated some soreness might set in.
“It’s not that bad,” he said through a translator.
The AL MVP runner-up homered off Yankees ace Gerrit Cole in the first inning, then seemed like he’d have to leave an inning later when his bare throwing hand was stepped on by baserunner Aaron Hicks.
Guerrero had to reach across his body for infielder Bo Bichette’s throw and placed his right hand down behind the first base bag to balance. Hicks stomped on it running out an infield single.
The 23-year-old Guerrero immediately began waving the hand around, then walked toward Toronto’s dugout as blood dripped onto his uniform and the turf. A trainer taped up the digit in the dugout, and after a couple of minutes, Guerrero jogged back to first base and the game continued.
With a bloody stain on the right thigh of his pants, Guerrero hit a two-run homer in his next at-bat. He then lined a double and hit another homer.
The World Series champion Atlanta Braves begin their first road series of the season when Charlie Morton (1-0, 3.38 ERA) starts at San Diego. Morton is 6-1 with a 2.09 ERA in nine career starts against the Padres.
Atlanta will be without reliever Luke Jackson this season after he had Tommy John surgery on Wednesday in Arlington, Texas. The Braves said shortly before opening day that Jackson had damage to the ligament in his right elbow.
Jackson was 2-2 with a career-best 1.98 ERA in 71 games last year. He had a 0.00 ERA in three World Series games against Houston.
The Mariners will be minus reliever Sergio Romo after putting him on the 10-day injured list with right shoulder inflammation.
The move was made retroactive to Tuesday, a day after he pitched a scoreless inning at Minnesota in his 800th major league appearance. The 39-year-old righty also tossed a scoreless inning against the Twins in his Mariners debut on Saturday.
Romo finalized a $2 million, one-year contract with Seattle last month.
NICE WHILE IT LASTED
Closer Corey Knebel’s return from the COVID-related injured list meant the end of 28-year-old journeyman reliever Jeff Singer’s brief time with his hometown Phillies.
The South Jersey native, who was working with his father at a Northeast Philadelphia car dealership in 2016 when the team signed him, got to sit in the bullpen at Citizens Bank Park on Tuesday night for the game against the Mets. He and had dozens of friends and family in attendance for his first game in a major league uniform.
“He got to fulfill a lifetime dream, and I think that was a special day for him,” Phillies manager Joe Girardi said. “It could be just the start of things to come.”
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