Roy Halladay was forced from his start Monday against the Cubs because of a heat-related illness, MLB.com’s Todd Zolecki reports.
The gametime temperature in Chicago tonight was 91 degrees. CSNPhilly.com’s Jim Salisbury points out that Halladay opened the game with red undershirt, but that it was gone when he came out for the fourth inning.
His early departure ended a string of 63 straight road starts in which he had lasted at least six innings. It was the longest such streak since The Big Train, Walter Johnson, did it in 82 starts in a row from 1911-15.
Halladay was charged with three runs in four-plus innings in the game and went on to take the loss in a 6-1 game. It was his shortest outing since he left his June 12, 2009 start for the Blue Jays with a groin injury in the fourth.
Jake Arrieta‘s bat is in midseason form already. The Cubs’ ace swatted a solo home run to center field off of Zack Greinke in Thursday afternoon’s Grapefruit League exhibition game, his first homer of the spring.
The blast went 465 feet, according to MLB.com’s Daren Willman.
Arrieta has hit two home runs in each of the past two seasons. Madison Bumgarner (eight) and Noah Syndergaard (four) are the only other pitchers to match or exceed his output in that department.
Greinke, meanwhile, is hoping to bounce back after a miserable 2016 season. He finished with an uncharacteristic 4.37 ERA in 26 starts in his first year with the Diamondbacks.
Angels first baseman Luis Valbuena will miss the next four to six weeks with a strained right hamstring, Pedro Moura of the Los Angeles Times reports.
Valbuena, 31, signed a two-year, $15 million contract with the Angels in January and was on track to get the lion’s share of the playing time at first base. While he’s out, however, C.J. Cron will handle first base on a regular basis. When Valbeuna returns, the two will likely form a platoon.
Last year with the Astros, Valbuena hit a solid .260/.357/.459 with 13 home runs and 40 RBI in 342 plate appearances.