Alfredo Aceves replaces John Lackey in Red Sox rotation

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Making official what was expected, the Red Sox announced that Alfredo Aceves will step into the rotation for the injured John Lackey, with his first start scheduled for tomorrow night against the Orioles.

Felix Doubront will slide back one day, starting Friday against the Rays in what was Lackey’s actual spot in the rotation. And for now at least the Red Sox haven’t placed Lackey on the disabled list, leaving open the possibility that he could return after missing just one or two starts.

Aceves threw 3.1 innings in relief after Lackey exited clutching his arm Saturday, so he’s stretched out enough to throw five-plus innings, but he hasn’t started a game since 2011 and has just nine career starts at age 30.

And That Happened: Thursday’s Score and Highlight

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Yeah, singular. Other than those ESPN Sunday Night games that opened the season for several years until recently I can’t remember a regular season day or night with only one game scheduled. I also don’t much like it, but no one asks me these things.

Cubs 9, Cardinals 6: The Cardinals led 3-1 heading into the Cubs’ half of the fifth, at which point Chicago went off for five runs, with Ian Happ hitting a two run homer and Jason Heyward, Antony Rizzo and Ben Zobrist each knocking in a run. St. Louis would continue to score but each time they did the Cubs answered, never trailing again.

Heyward had three hits on the night, Happ had that dinger, Rizzo had two doubles and Victor Caratini, giving the just-returned All-Star Willson Contreras an extra day off, had three hits and scored three times.

As for pitching, check out this usage pattern from Joe Maddon:

I guess everyone was fresh after the break, though, so why not?

We get a full slate of 15 games today. As God and Nature intended.