Martin Prado feels pain in broken finger during batting practice

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Not exactly what you want to hear if you are Braves fan. According to Chris Vivlamore of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Martin Prado felt pain in his broken right pinky finger when he took batting practice indoors Friday.

“The vibration is bothering me,” Prado said. “It stings a little bit.”

“They told me it won’t be easy,” Prado said. “It’s not going to go away.
I’m just trying to get all my strength back. A little bit of pain won’t
be a problem.”

Prado is eligible to return from the disabled list on Sunday, however Braves manager Bobby Cox doesn’t think his All-Star second baseman will be ready that quickly. For now, Prado will see how his finger responds on Saturday. The good news is that hasn’t had any issues fielding ground balls or soft-tossing thus far. 

“I wish I could tell you how long it’s going to take,” Prado said. “I’m going to do as much as I can to get back.”

Prado was batting .315/.357/.484 with 13 homers and 43 RBI before going on the disabled list on July 31.

The Braves haven’t vocalized a clear plan on a replacement at third base now that Chipper Jones is lost for the season and Prado’s recovery likely plays a part in that. The ideal scenario would be to keep Omar Infante at second base and move Prado over to third, but it won’t be realistic if he doesn’t feel comfortable making long throws across the diamond. 

Astros push ALCS to Game 7 with 7-1 stunner against Yankees

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There’s just something about playing in your home ballpark. The Astros decimated the Yankees at Minute Maid Park on Friday, riding seven scoreless innings from Justin Verlander and a pair of big runs from Jose Altuve to win 7-1 and force a Game 7 in the American League Championship Series.

Through the first four innings, however, the teams looked equally matched. Luis Severino no-hit the Astros through 3 2/3 innings, losing his bid on Carlos Correa‘s line drive single in the fourth. The Astros returned in the fifth to do some real damage, drawing two walks and plating the first run of the night with Brian McCann‘s ground-rule double off of the right field wall. Things didn’t get any easier for Severino. Jose Altuve lined a two-RBI base hit into left field, upping Houston’s advantage to three runs.

Verlander, meanwhile, muted the Yankees’ offense with seven innings of five-hit, eight-strikeout ball. While he didn’t come close to matching his complete game effort in Game 2, he was still plenty dominant against a struggling New York lineup. No player reached past first base until the sixth inning, when a pair of base hits from Chase Headley and Didi Gregorius gave the Yankees their first runner in scoring position. That didn’t last long, though, as Gary Sanchez grounded out on a 3-0 slider to end the inning.

In the seventh, Houston’s ace got into another spot of trouble. He walked Greg Bird on six pitches to start the inning, then plunked Starlin Castro on the wrist. Aaron Hicks struck out, in part thanks to a questionable call by home plate umpire Jim Reynolds, but it was Todd Frazier who presented the biggest threat after returning an 0-1 fastball for a 403-foot fly out to left field. Luckily for Verlander, George Springer was there to bail him out with a leaping catch at the wall.

The Yankees kept things exciting in the eighth, too. Aaron Judge ripped his third postseason home run off of Brad Peacock, taking a 425-footer out to the train in left field to spoil the Astros’ shutout. That was the only real break the Yankees got, however, as Altuve, Alex Bregman and Evan Gattis returned in the bottom of the inning to tack on another four runs, including Altuve’s solo shot off of David Robertson:

Ken Giles handled the ninth, expending 23 pitches and giving up a base hit and a walk before retiring Frazier and Headley to end the game. Thanks to Houston’s winning efforts, the two teams will compete in their first seven-game Championship Series since 2004 — and this time, at least one of them is guaranteed to come away with a win.

Game 7 of the ALCS is set for Saturday at 8:00 PM ET. Houston right-hander Charlie Morton (14-7, 3.62 ERA) is scheduled to face southpaw CC Sabathia (14-5, 3.69 ERA).