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Watch: Mikie Mahtook lends a helping hand to a Jose Ramirez home run


Jose Ramirez kicked things off for the Indians in unusual fashion on Sunday, returning a 3-2 fastball from Tigers’ southpaw Chad Bell to give the club a one-run lead in the first inning. The ball traveled an estimated 361 feet, per Statcast’s calculations, but needed an extra push to clear the fence in left field. It bounced twice off the top of the wall before eventually tipping away from the field.

There to lend a helping hand? Tigers’ left fielder Mikie Mahtook, who reached for the ball twice before inadvertently pushing it over the wall — and causing a little frustration in Detroit’s bullpen, too.

Ramirez returned in the third inning with a leadoff double, his 45th of the season, and hustled home to score on a comebacker off of Carlos Santana‘s bat. The Indians currently lead the Tigers 4-1 in the top of the fourth.

Dbacks outfielder Steven Souza injured his right shoulder last night

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Arizona Diamondbacks right fielder Steven Souza dove for a ball in a spring training game last night, missed, and ended up injuring his right shoulder.

It looked bad, too. Center fielder Jarrod Dyson stood over him, frantically waving to the dugout for a trainer as Souza kicked his legs in apparent pain. Souza held his arms awkwardly as he walked off the field. At the moment the Dbacks are calling it a right shoulder strain, but he’ll get an MRI on it today after which a more specific diagnosis will come.

If Souza is out for a while it’s a pretty big blow to Arizona’s 2018 plan. Souza was acquired to help cushion the blow of losing J.D. Martinez in free agency. While not the hitter Martinez is, Souza hit 30 homers in Tampa Bay last year, stood likely to at least match that in the more hitter-friendly confines of Chase Field and, of course, plays superior defense.

Potential replacements for Souza include moving David Peralta from left to right and inserting Yasmany Tomas in left or having fourth outfielder Dyson, or perhaps a platoon of Dyson and utilityman Chris Owings, handle right. Socrates Brito is another internal option.

Obviously the Snakes will wait to hear the results of the MRI before going too deeply into replacement plans, all the while hoping that Souza’s injury is far less serious than it appeared to be last night.