Aroldis Chapman to begin pitching at Triple-A this week

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The Reds placed Aroldis Chapman on the disabled list last week after the Cuban setup man opened the season with 20 walks in his first 13 innings and then began developing left shoulder inflammation.

He’s already ready to begin pitching again.

According to beat writer Mark Sheldon of MLB.com, Chapman has been sent to Triple-A Louisville and will begin a minor league rehab assignment Monday night against the Orioles’ Triple-A affiliate in Norfolk, Virginia. The southpaw played a game of long toss in front of Reds pitching coach Bryan Price on Sunday and checked out fine.

The Reds are hoping that Chapman will regain his confidence and command against a lower level of competition. He’s expected to make at least three appearances with Louisville before returning to the majors.

Indians sign Melvin Upton Jr. to a minor league deal

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The Cleveland Indians have agreed to a minor league deal with outfielder Melvin Upton, Jr.

Upton, 33, battled a torn thumb ligament and a shoulder issue last season, limiting him to only 12 games with Triple-A Sacramento, the Giants’ affiliate. In those 12 games, he hit .244 with one double and one home run. Upton last played in the majors in 2016 with the Padres and Blue Jays with which he posted an aggregate .693 OPS.

Given the injuries suffered by Indians outfielders in the past couple of seasons it can’t hurt to have some options for organizational depth. If he has anything left in the tank, stash him on the bench or down in Columbus. If not, no harm done.