Matt LaPorta lands on disabled list with sprained right ankle

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One day after getting Travis Hafner back from the disabled list, the Indians will now have to get by without another one of their regulars.

The Indians announced this afternoon that Matt LaPorta was placed on the 15-day disabled list with a sprained right ankle.

LaPorta injured the ankle in a rundown between second and third base in the third inning of last night’s game against the Pirates. Indians manager Manny Acta told Jordan Bastian of this afternoon that LaPorta suffered a “mild high ankle sprain” and is expected to miss 2-3 weeks.

Travis Buck, who was sent down to Triple-A Columbus when Hafner was activated yesterday, will replace LaPorta on the active roster. He is expected to share playing time at first base with Carlos Santana and possibly Jack Hannahan moving forward. Nick Johnson is currently playing with Triple-A Columbus, but Acta said Saturday that he needs more at-bats. Santana will get the start at first base tonight.

LaPorta, 26, is batting .242/.309/.424 with eight home runs and 31 RBI over his first 220 plate appearances this season.

Chris Sale will start on Opening Day for Red Sox

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No surprise here: Chris Sale will start on Opening Day for the Red Sox, Pete Abraham of The Boston Globe reports. The Red Sox open the season on March 29 in Tampa Bay against the Rays. Sale will oppose Chris Archer.

Sale, 28, is the fifth different Opening Day starter the Red Sox have had in as many years, preceded by Rick Porcello, David Price, Clay Buchholz, and Jon Lester. Sale started on Opening Day for the White Sox in 2013, ’14, and ’16.

Sale finished second in AL Cy Young Award balloting last year and finished ninth for AL MVP. He went 17-8 with a 2.90 ERA and a 308/43 K/BB ratio in 214 1/3 innings. Sale and Clayton Kershaw (2015) are the only pitchers to strike out 300 or more batters in a season dating back to 2003.