Aroldis Chapman gave the Reds a big scare when he walked all four batters he faced Sunday and then was unavailable for several days with an “achy” left shoulder, but the flame-throwing closer was back in action Thursday night.
Chapman threw a scoreless eighth inning in a blowout loss to the Braves, striking out two of the three batters he faced.
Reds manager Bryan Price told Mark Sheldon of MLB.com that he’s confident enough in Chapman now being healthy again that they could use him next as soon as today.
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The Toronto Blue Jays have named J.A. Happ their Opening Day starter. He’ll face off against Luis Severino and the New York Yankees on March 29 in Toronto.
Based on last season’s stats you’d assume Marcus Stroman would get the Opening Day assignment, but he has been slowed by a right shoulder inflammation this spring. He’ll get three extra days rest to start the season and start the finale of the four-game series against the Yankees. After Happ will come Aaron Sanchez and Marco Estrada. Jaime Garcia will be the fifth starter.
Happ, 35, is entering the final year of a three-year, $36 million deal. He went 10-11 with a 3.53 ERA in 25 starts last season.