Japhet Amador expected to report to Astros camp on Friday

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The Astros signed slugger Japhet Amador out of the Mexican League over the winter with the idea of giving him a chance to compete for the first base job during spring training, but he was unable to report to camp last week because his pregnant wife was ill. However, her condition has apparently improved to the point where he’ll be able to join the Astros.

Evan Drellich of the Houston Chronicle reports that Amador is expected to arrive in Orlando, Florida later this evening and should report to Astros camp tomorrow. It’s not clear when he’ll be ready for game action.

Listed at 6-foot-4, and 305 pounds on the Astros website, Amador is a very big man and he should be an interesting story to follow. The 27-year-old posted massive power numbers in the Mexican League, including 36 home runs last season. Whether that success will translate against advanced competition is the big question, but the rebuilding Astros are willing to take the gamble.

Another young fan was struck by a foul ball, this time at Guaranteed Rate Field

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ESPN reports via the Associated Press that a young boy was struck by a line drive foul ball but was not seriously injured during Sunday afternoon’s game against the Royals. The boy and a woman were escorted by a first aid crew to the concourse area and the boy was later eating ice cream in a luxury suite.

A woman was struck in the face by a foul ball also on the first base side at Guaranteed Rate Field on Friday, but she didn’t request medical assistance.

Last week, a young fan at Yankee Stadium was hit by a line drive foul ball, which motivated several teams to commit to extending protective netting at their ballparks. The Yankees, strangely, were not among them. Nor were the White Sox.

Diamondbacks clinch NL Wild Card

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Losses by the Cardinals to the Pirates and the Brewers to the Cubs on Sunday clinched an NL Wild Card berth for the Diamondbacks. Their walk-off, 3-2 win over the Marlins earned them hosting rights for the Wild Card game.

The D-Backs, now 90-66, trailed the Marlins 2-1 going into the bottom of the eighth. Daniel Descalso tied the game at two apiece with an RBI single off of Brad Ziegler. Second half hero J.D. Martinez secured the win with a walk-off RBI single in the bottom of the ninth against Javy Guerra.

The Rockies beat the Padres on Sunday to increase their lead over the Brewers (+2) and Cardinals (+2.5) for the second Wild Card slot. One of these three teams will visit Arizona for the Wild Card game.

The Diamondbacks are back in the playoffs for the first time since 2011, when they lost the Division Series in five games to the Brewers.