Mariano Rivera expected to miss rest of season with torn ACL in right knee

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UPDATE: Mariano Rivera addressed reporters a short while ago, confirming that he has a torn ACL in his right knee and also hinted that there is damage to his meniscus.

Rivera was quite emotional throughout, particularly after being asked whether he’ll attempt to come back from the injury or call it a career (via Bryan Hoch of MLB.com).

“At this point, I don’t know,” Rivera said, repeating softly, “At this point, I don’t know. I have to face this first.”

11:37 PM: Uh-oh. According to Bryan Hoch of MLB.com, Mariano Rivera was diagnosed with a torn ACL in his right knee.

It’s being called a “preliminary report” and Rivera will travel back to New York to see team doctors, but he will almost certainly miss the rest of the season. Just awful. Let’s hope he doesn’t go out like this.

8:10 PM: YES Network has posted video of the injury. Check it out if you want to be thoroughly depressed.

7:54 PM: This is extremely preliminary, but Mark Feinsand of the New York Daily News reports that Rivera was diagnosed with a “twisted right knee” after being examined by a Royals’ associate physician and Yankees trainers.

We’ll know something more definitive after he undergoes an MRI tonight.

7:35 PM: Yankees bullpen coach Mike Harkey told Sweeny Murti of WFAN that Rivera indeed slipped on the warning track while shagging fly balls on the warning track.

They actually just showed the replay of the injury on the YES broadcast and well, it doesn’t look good at all. We’re still awaiting official word on the exact nature of the injury.

7:27 PM: Troubling news for the Yankees.

According to Erik Boland of New York Newsday, Mariano was carted off the field after suffering an apparent injury to his right knee during batting practice. Sweeny Murti of WFAN reports that the injured occurred when Rivera was shagging fly balls.

Daniel Barbasi of the Wall Street Journal reports that Rivera was “smiling and laughing” as he was being carted off, but that the all-time saves leader needed to be helped into the Yankees clubhouse by manager Joe Girardi and wasn’t putting any weight on his right leg. We’ll pass along an update as soon as it’s made available.

Rivera, who has hinted at retirement following 2012, has a 2.16 ERA, five saves and an 8/2 K/BB ratio over 8 1/3 innings of work this season. The 42-year-old right-hander hasn’t had a stint on the disabled list since 2003.

Check out Minute Maid Park without Tal’s Hill

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During the offseason, the Astros finally got rid of Tal’s Hill in center field. It was a throwback to older stadiums, some of which had uneven topography — Crosley Field, namely. As unique as it was in the age of cookie cutter sports stadiums, most of us were holding our collective breaths hoping no one ruptured an Achilles or suffered another brutal injury trying to navigate the hill while attempting to catch a fly ball.

We saw what it looked like during reconstruction:

And now, via Julia Morales of ROOT Sports, we see what it looks like after all the work has been done:

The Astros are allowing fans with Lexus Field Club tickets to stand on the new warning track to watch batting practice and shag fly balls as well, Morales notes. Lexus Field Club is where Tal’s Hill used to be.

Good riddance, Tal’s Hill.

Jhoulys Chacin will start Opening Day for the Padres

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Jhoulys Chacin will start on Opening Day, April 3 against the Dodgers in Los Angeles, Dennis Lin of the San Diego Union-Tribune reports. It will be Chacin’s second Opening Day start, the other coming in 2013 with the Rockies against the Brewers. He’ll be the fifth different Padres pitcher in as many years to start on Opening Day.

Chacin, 29, inked a one-year, $1.75 million contract with the Padres in December. The right-hander spent the 2016 season with the Braves and Angels, compiling an aggregate 4.81 ERA with a 119/55 K/BB ratio in 144 innings.

Lin notes that Chacin will be followed in the rotation by Clayton Richard and Jered Weaver. It will be an interesting rotation, to say the least, as it will arguably be the worst in baseball.