Despite piles of evidence to the contrary, Dodgers center fielder Matt Kemp is apparently human.
According to MLB.com’s Ken Gurnick, the 27-year-old has been scratched from Sunday’s series finale against the Cubs because of a tight left hamstring.
There are rainy conditions at and around Chicago’s Wrigley Field, and the Dodgers don’t want to risk turning a minor thing into something major.
Tony Gwynn Jr. will start in center field in his place.
Kemp has posted an outrageous .392/.474/.825 slash line, 12 homers and 27 RBI in 116 plate appearances this season. It’s not clear whether he’s going to play in Monday night’s series-opener against the Giants.
Royals’ Opening Day starter Danny Duffy weathered a minor scare during Saturday’s Cactus League game against the Diamondbacks. The left-hander was removed from his final spring training start after experiencing some left shoulder tightness in the second and third innings. No lasting damage appears to have been done — Duffy told reporters that he simply felt a slight ache, nothing more — and it looks like he’ll remain on track to open the season with the team next Thursday.
The 29-year-old southpaw is coming off one of his best performances to date. Despite losing a few weeks to an oblique strain and elbow soreness, he went 9-10 in 24 starts and finished the 2017 season with a 3.81 ERA, 2.5 BB/9 and 8.0 SO/9 over 146 1/3 innings. While Duffy entered camp with a clean bill of health, he struggled to execute against his spring training opponents and racked up 13 runs, four homers, seven walks and 11 strikeouts in 13 innings of Cactus League play.
The Royals are scheduled to kick off their home opener against the White Sox on Thursday, March 29 at 4:15 PM ET. Barring any further complications with his shoulder, Duffy will take the mound for the Royals, while James Shields is expected to make his first Opening Day appearance for the White Sox.