A look at what’s going on around the majors on Friday:
Two-way star Shohei Ohtani has been struck out of his scheduled Angels departure from Oakland due to a pain in his right arm that could put him on the sidelines as a pitcher for the remainder of the season.
“If there’s some kind of lingering pain you might not see him pitch,” Angels manager Joe Maddon said ahead of Thursday’s game against the Chicago White Sox.
Ohtani (9-2, 3.36 ERA) felt pain while playing wrestling on Wednesday. Maddon said there are currently no plans for Ohtani to be seen by a doctor, nor has it been determined when he will attempt to return to wrestling.
The discomfort in the arm won’t stop Ohtani from continuing to strike. Ohtani entered Thursday’s game against the White Sox second in the major leagues with 44 home runs.
Longtime Phillies starter Vince Velasquez is making his first start since signing a minor league deal with the exhausted Padres.
Cut off by Philadelphia this week, the 29-year-old right-hander is set to start the series opener in St. Louis in a clash between the NL wild card contenders. Blake Snell was initially lined up to throw, but he was put on the injured list with a strained adductor muscle. Padres starter Chris Paddack also came out with an inflamed elbow.
Velasquez was 3-6 with a 5.95 ERA for the Phillies this year. He was 30-40 for Philadelphia in six seasons.
“Knowing that the opportunity arises, that they are down with a few starters, I have three weeks left to help them in a push,” he said. “I know it probably hasn’t been the strongest year for me. But I think a new setting, a new team …
In August, the Padres attempted to increase their rotation with a veteran pitcher, signing Jake Arrieta after his release from the Cubs. Arrieta is 0-2 with an 8.25 ERA in three starts for San Diego.
Freddie Freeman and the Atlanta Braves begin a three-game series against Brandon Crawford and the San Francisco Giants in a clash between the leaders of the NL Division.
Ian Anderson (7-5, 3.61 ERA) throws for Atlanta in Game 1 of a 10-game trip that ends in a three-game big set in San Diego. Logan Webb (10-3, 2.80 ERA) is aiming for his third straight win for San Francisco.
The Braves (76-68) are looking to push back Philadelphia in the eastern NL, and the Giants (95-52), major league leaders, are pushed by World Series champion Dodgers in the West. The teams also played in August, with the Braves winning two of three games in Atlanta.
Astros left-hander Framber Valdez was wiped out of his last scheduled start after cutting his index finger off his pitching hand.
Valdez was supposed to start Thursday night for executives at AL West in Texas. Houston manager Dusty Baker said Valdez was cut Wednesday when he put his hand on the outfield wall during batting practice at the one-year-old Rangers home.
This is the same finger that Valdez broke at the start of spring training when he was hit in the hand by a line attack from Francisco Lindor of the Mets, which put him on the sidelines for two months.
Valdez is now likely to start at the Angels on Monday. The 27-year-old is 10-5 with a 3.26 ERA in 19 starts.
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