According to Mark Zuckerman of CSNWashington.com, Adam LaRoche is out of today’s lineup against the Reds due to a stiff back. He has been dealing with the issue over the past couple of days and made an early exit from last night’s 15-0 blowout loss after his condition worsened.
It doesn’t sound like a major concern at the moment, but there’s a chance that LaRoche could also sit out tomorrow. Chad Tracy will make the start at first base this afternoon with right-hander Mike Leake on the hill for Cincinnati.
LaRoche, 33, batted .271/.343/.510 with 33 home runs, 100 RBI and an .853 OPS last season. He was retained by Washington this winter on a two-year, $24 million contract with a mutual option for 2015.
Former Phillies right-hander Miguel Alfredo Gonzalez died in a traffic accident in Havana on Thursday, per reports from the El Nuevo Herald and CiberCuba. No other deaths or injuries have been reported in connection to the accident. Gonzalez was 34 years old.
The Cuban righty defected from his home country in 2013 and signed a three-year, $12 million contract with the Phillies. A bout of right shoulder tendinitis compromised his bid for a major league role, but he finally broke through to the big leagues at the tail end of the 2014 season and turned in a 6.75 ERA, 5.1 BB/9 and 8.4 SO/9 in just six outings. Another case of shoulder inflammation derailed any progress he might have made in 2015, however, and he recorded just five innings in Triple-A Lehigh Valley before the team officially released him prior to the 2016 season.
The Phillies released a statement following news of Gonzalez’s death: