Angels ace Jered Weaver won’t be trying for his seventh win this afternoon in Tampa Bay.
From Angels announcer Victor Rojas comes word that Weaver has been scratched from his scheduled Sunday outing against the Rays due to a flu-like illness. Tyler Chatwood, 21, will slide up the schedule and take the mound in his place.
Weaver has opened the season with six straight decisions — all of them victories — and currently owns a 0.99 ERA and 0.79 WHIP. He has fanned 49 batters in 45 2/3 innings and has walked only 10.
There isn’t a hotter pitcher in the game, but the right-hander will have to put that momentum on hold for a couple of days as he battles a mild virus. As soon as he’s feeling better, the Halos will get him back atop a mound.
Weaver is just the fourth pitcher in major league history to hold a 6-0 record before the start of May.
Yankees first baseman Greg Bird gave his team tons of confidence to hand him the everyday job at first base to start the 2017 regular season, batting .451/.556/1.098 with eight home runs in 51 spring at-bats. But he’s followed that up by hitting .107/.254/.214 through the first month of the regular season.
GM Brian Cashman doesn’t have any intent to demote Bird back to Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre, MLB.com’s Bryan Hoch reports. Cashman said, “It’s not even an option for me in my mind right now, at all.”
Bird didn’t start Sunday’s game against the Orioles, a 7-4 loss in 11 innings. Lefty Wade Miley started for the Orioles, prompting manager Joe Girardi to put Chris Carter into the lineup at first base. If Bird isn’t able to figure things out, Carter might have an increased role on the team.
Rays starter Chris Archer threw his first pitch to Blue Jays outfielder Jose Bautista behind the slugger’s back with one out in the first inning of Sunday afternoon’s game in Toronto. Bautista and Archer then had a staredown. Home plate umpire Jim Wolf issued warnings to both teams. Bautista ultimately flied out to right field and he appeared to have a quick word with Archer on his way back to the dugout.
Archer could have been exacting revenge — euphemistically known as “protecting his teammate” — because Jays reliever Joe Biagini hit Rays outfielder Steven Souza in the seventh inning of Saturday’s game. Souza was forced to leave the game and underwent an X-ray, which came back negative. He was held out of Sunday’s lineup. Biagini’s pitch did not appear to be intentional.
The Jays won Sunday’s contest 3-1 with no further incident. The two clubs meet again in Tampa for a three-game series starting on May 5, so we’ll see if Sunday was the last of the bad blood between them.