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Vince Velasquez leaves game with right flexor strain

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Phillies starter Vince Velasquez left Tuesday’s start in Miami against the Marlins with a right flexor strain, the Phillies announced. Flexor injuries are serious, so Velasquez is certainly going to undergo an MRI, which will then determine the exact severity of the injury and a timetable for his recovery.

The 24-year-old right-hander lasted just 1 1/3 innings, yielding two runs (one earned) on two hits with no walks and one strikeout. Velasquez has struggled overall this season. He came into his start against the Marlins with a 5.55 ERA with a 52/21 K/BB ratio in 48 2/3 innings.

The Phillies acquired Velasquez as part of the return from the Astros in the Ken Giles trade in December 2015. Velasquez showed promise at times out of the rotation last season, such as his 16-strikeout shutout of the Padres in April 2016. But he’s been mostly inconsistent, a common theme among the Phillies’ youngsters.

Ex-Angels employee charged in overdose death of Tyler Skaggs

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FORT WORTH, Texas — A former Angels employee has been charged with conspiracy to distribute fentanyl in connection with last year’s overdose death of Angels pitcher Tyler Skaggs, prosecutors in Texas announced Friday.

Eric Prescott Kay was arrested in Fort Worth, Texas, and made his first appearance Friday in federal court, according to Erin Nealy Cox, the U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Texas. Kay was communications director for the Angels.

Skaggs was found dead in his hotel room in the Dallas area July 1, 2019, before the start of what was supposed to be a four-game series against the Texas Rangers. The first game was postponed before the teams played the final three games.

Skaggs died after choking on his vomit with a toxic mix of alcohol and the powerful painkillers fentanyl and oxycodone in his system, a coroner’s report said. Prosecutors accused Kay of providing the fentanyl to Skaggs and others, who were not named.

“Tyler Skaggs’s overdose – coming, as it did, in the midst of an ascendant baseball career – should be a wake-up call: No one is immune from this deadly drug, whether sold as a powder or hidden inside an innocuous-looking tablet,” Nealy Cox said.

If convicted, Kay faces up to 20 years in prison. Federal court records do not list an attorney representing him, and an attorney who previously spoke on his behalf did not immediately return a message seeking comment.