So much for that: Reds cancel Aroldis Chapman’s winter ball plans

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Aroldis Chapman went to the Arizona Fall League in order to build up some arm strength in preparation for pitching as a starter in the Puerto Rican winter league, but the Reds have canceled those plans.

Chapman is healthy after briefly being sidelined by shoulder soreness in Arizona, but general manager Walt Jocketty told John Fay of the Cincinnati Enquirer that they’ve decided to have the 23-year-old left-hander stay in the team-controlled environments in Arizona and Florida:

We’ve decided against sending him to Puerto Rico. He’s on a strength-and-conditioning program in Arizona. He’ll go to Florida after that and continue to work out. There’s no injury. We just want to make sure he’s 100 percent. He had the shoulder issue during the season.

Despite the change of plans the Reds are still hoping that Chapman can make the transition from reliever to starter for 2012, which means he might spend spring training building arm strength instead of showing up to camp ready to work as a starter.

Ronald Acuña leaves Sunday’s game with knee and lower back pain

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Braves outfielder Ronald Acuña exited Sunday afternoon’s game against the Red Sox due to knee and lower back pain, the club announced. Acuña stumbled after crossing the first base bag attempting to beat out a ground ball in the top of the seventh inning. Here’s video of the play:

The injury looked worse than vague knee and lower back pain. Acuña will certainly undergo testing and the Braves should provide more information on his status later tonight or on Monday.

Acuña went 1-for-3 with a walk before exiting. In his first 129 major league plate appearances, he’s hitting .265/.326/.453 with five home runs, 13 RBI, and 19 runs scored.