Braves trade reliever Jim Johnson to the Angels

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The Los Angels Angels announced a few minutes ago that they have acquired righty reliever Jim Johnson and international pool space from the Atlanta Braves in exchange for minor league lefty Justin Kelly.

The Braves, were blasted back to the stone age as far as international pool money is concerned, but that’s for the signing period beginning next summer. They still had still had money on the books for the 2017-18 period, though not much. That goes to the Angels now.

As for the ballplayers, Johnson saved 22 games for Atlanta last season, posting 5.56 ERA in 61 games. Not a great line to be sure, but over the past two seasons he has improved on a 2014 and a partial 2015 season in which he seemed lost at sea. Los Angeles fans may remember his awful partial season with the 2015 Dodgers, but that seems to be in his rear-view mirror for the most part now.

Kelly, a 33rd round pick of the Angels in 2016, started six games and came out of the pen in 19 games across five different levels of the minors this past year.

Aaron Judge out of Yankees starting lineup for finale after No. 62

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ARLINGTON, Texas — Yankees slugger Aaron Judge wasn’t in the starting lineup for New York’s regular-season finale, a day after his 62nd home run that broke Roger Maris’ 61-year-old American League single-season record.

When Judge homered in the first inning Tuesday night, in the second game of a doubleheader against the Texas Rangers, it was his 55th consecutive game. He has played in 157 games overall for the AL East champions.

With the first-round bye in the playoffs, the Yankees won’t open postseason play until the AL Division Series starts next Tuesday.

Even though Judge had indicated that he hoped to play Wednesday, manager Aaron Boone said after Tuesday night’s game that they would have a conversation and see what made the most sense.

“Short conversation,” Boone said before Wednesday’s game, adding that he was “pretty set on probably giving him the day today.”

Asked if there was a scenario in which Judge would pinch hit, Boone responded, “I hope not.”

Judge went into the final day of the regular season batting .311, trailing American League batting average leader Minnesota’s Luis Arraez, who was hitting .315. Judge was a wide leader in the other Triple Crown categories, with his 62 homers and 131 RBIs.

Boone said that “probably the one temptation” to play Judge had been the long shot chance the slugger had to become the first AL Triple Crown winner since Detroit’s Miguel Cabrera in 2012.