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Indians-Twins series in Puerto Rico still set for April

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Last summer, Major League Baseball announced that the Indians and Twins would travel to San Juan, Puerto Rico for a two-game series at Hiram Bithorn Stadium April 17-18. The games would be counted as Twins home games.

When Hurricane Maria slammed Puerto Rico last September, the island was devastated. Much of Puerto Rico, in fact, still does not have electricity or basic public services. In light of that it was widely assumed that the Indians-Twins series would return to Minnesota.

Nope. Jon Morosi of MLB.com reports:

This year’s regular-season series between the Twins and Indians will be played as scheduled, despite the devastation wrought by Hurricane Maria last fall. One source told MLB.com that ticket information for the games, set for April 17 and 18 at Hiram Bithorn Stadium in San Juan, could be announced formally as early as next week.

Although the ballpark sustained damage when Hurricane Maria made landfall in Puerto Rico as a Category 4 storm, MLB officials are confident that Hiram Bithorn Stadium will return to its normal functionality in advance of the series.

At the moment, Morosi says, the league and the Players Union are working out detail of community and humanitarian efforts that will accompany the series.

This will be the first time regular season MLB games will be played in Puerto Rico since 2010.

Manny Machado, batting second, playing shortstop in his Dodgers debut

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The biggest news of the All-Star break — even bigger than the All-Star Game itself — was the trade of Manny Machado to the Dodgers. We talked about it for days, but now the talking is done: Machado is playing shortstop and is batting second in his Dodgers debut this evening against the Brewers in Milwaukee.

Machado is expected to play a little third base for the Dodgers, too, but with Justin Turner still out with a bum hop, Machado will play his preferred position. It’s not the one he plays as well, but that’s another topic altogether and is, eventually, going to be Dave Roberts’ problem.

Machado is hitting .315/.387/.575 with 24 homers and 65 RBI on the year. Those numbers all get set back to zero now that he’s in the National League, however. Tonight he begins compiling new numbers.