Aroldis Chapman was scheduled to make his first Arizona Fall League start yesterday, but those plans were canceled because of shoulder soreness.
Chapman previously made two relief appearances in the AFL as the Reds try to stretch him out for a potential starting role in 2012, but general manager Walt Jocketty told Mark Sheldon of MLB.com that “he had a little inflammation in his shoulder.”
No decision has been made yet about when Chapman might return to the mound, but in addition to the AFL action he’s slated to pitch in the Puerto Rican winter league next month.
Perhaps there are a few who still miss the slope of Tal’s Hill rising from center field, but George Springer isn’t one of them. He lassoed a 403-foot fly ball from Todd Frazier in the seventh inning of Game 6, reaching nearly to the top of the wall to prevent the Yankees from gaining on the Astros’ 3-0 lead.
According to Statcast, a fly ball with an exit velocity of 103.6 MPH and a launch angle of 29 degrees lands for a home run 72% of the time. That wasn’t going to fly with the Astros, who were facing runners on first and second with one out and saw Justin Verlander‘s pitch count rapidly approaching 100.
It wasn’t long before the Yankees tried for another home run, however, and this one sailed far above the heads of all of the Astros’ outfielders. Aaron Judge lofted a 425-foot shot to left field in the eighth inning, destroying a first-pitch fastball from Brad Peacock and finally getting New York on the board.
The Yankees currently trail the Astros 4-1 in the bottom of the eighth.