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James Paxton strains his pectoral muscle

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Bad news for the Mariners last night as James Paxton was lifted from his start against the Angels due to a left pectoral strain.

Paxton had been pitching well, having allowed three runs and working in the seventh inning when he was seen rubbing his upper left chest before being taken out. He’ll have an MRI today and the Mariners will know more about his condition.

Paxton has been the ace for Seattle this year, picking up the slack in a rotation that has seen Felix Hernandez go down to multiple injuries. Paxton is 12-3 this year with a 2.78 ERA and a K/BB ratio of 138/33 in 119.2 innings across 20 starts. The Mariners are 59-57 and stand in a tie with the Tampa Bay Rays for the second Wild Card.

Cubs to activate Craig Kimbrel on Thursday

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The Cubs will activate reliever Craig Kimbrel ahead of Thursday afternoon’s game against the Braves, Sahadev Sharma of The Athletic reports.

Kimbrel, 31, ended a seven-month stint in free agency, agreeing to a three-year, $43 million contract with the Cubs earlier this month. He has made four minor league appearances, allowing one earned run on two hits and a walk with four strikeouts in 3 2/3 innings.

With an aggregate 3.96 ERA entering Wednesday, the Cubs’ bullpen has been among the better bullpens in the league. Adding Kimbrel, one of the greatest closers of all-time, certainly can’t hurt and will give them some stability in save situations.