Braves' Kris Medlen lifted from start with elbow injury

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Braves starter Kris Medlen was lifted from his start against the Mets in the fifth inning Wednesday because of an injury to the ulnar collateral ligament of his pitching elbow.  This according to David O’Brien of the Atlanta-Journal Constitution.

It may turn out to be nothing — soreness or tightness, whatever.  But, as O’Brien notes, serious injuries to the ulnar collateral ligament often require Tommy John reconstructive elbow surgery.  A tear of any sort could result in Medlen missing the rest of the season, and perhaps more.

The Braves officially converted the 24-year-old right-hander from the bullpen to the starting rotation in June and he’s been brilliant in both roles.  Through 31 total appearances this season (14 starts), he has posted a 3.68 ERA, a 1.20 WHIP and 83 strikeouts against 21 walks over 107.2 innings.

Masahiro Tanaka throws two-hit shutout vs. Rays

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Yankees starter Masahiro Tanaka went the distance, holding the Rays scoreless on two hits and one walk with 10 strikeouts across nine innings on Monday night in the Bronx. It’s the fourth shutout of his career, accounting for four of the Yankees’ last six shutouts. The other two were thrown my Luis Severino and Brandon McCarthy.

DJ LeMahieu provided the bulk of the offense, swatting a two-run home run off of Yonny Chirinos in the third inning. Cameron Maybin tacked on a solo homer off of Chirinos in the fifth as the Yankees went on to win 3-0.

After Monday’s performance, Tanaka owns a 3.23 ERA with 84 strikeouts and 20 walks across 92 innings on the season.

With the win, the Yankees increase their lead over the Rays for first place in the AL East to 1.5 games.