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Dustin Pedroia activated, in lineup for Red Sox home opener

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After nearly a year in the wilderness, Dustin Pedroia is back. The Red Sox have activated their second baseman. He is hitting seventh and playing second base in today’s home opener against the Toronto Blue Jays

Pedroia appeared in only three games last year after having his left knee surgically repaired in Nov. 2017. He underwent a cleanup procedure on his left knee last July and that cost him the rest of the year. After seven spring training games, extended spring training in Fort Myers and then three games at A-ball where he went 3-for-9, the Red Sox have deemed him ready to go again.

Brock Holt and Eduardo Nunez have covered second base in the first 11 games of the season, but Holt is on the injured list at the moment. For now they’ll want to rest Pedroia a lot, one assumes. Once Holt is back Alex Cora is going to have to figure something out. I imagine everyone is hoping that Pedroia returns to something close to his old form and makes his decision making much easier.

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.