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Justin Upton makes 2019 debut, homers on first pitch he sees

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The Angels activated outfielder Justin Upton from the 60-day injured list on Monday, as the outfielder missed the first two and a half months due to a sprained toe. Manager Brad Ausmus slotted him in the cleanup spot behind Shohei Ohtani. Upton needed to see just one pitch to make his impact felt.

Leading off the second inning, Upton swung at a first-pitch fastball from Blue Jays starter Edwin Jackson, belting it out to left field to tie the game at 1-1. It would kickstart a seven-run outburst.

In his next at-bat later that inning, Upton singled to chase Jackson from the game.

Upton, 31, put up a solid .257/.344/.463 triple-slash line last season along with 30 home runs and 85 RBI in 613 plate appearances. He has three years and $72 million remaining on his contract after the 2019 campaign.

Joe Kelly’s suspension reduced to 5 games on appeal

Joe Kelly suspended eight
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LOS ANGELES — Los Angeles Dodgers reliever Joe Kelly had his suspension for throwing pitches near the heads of Houston hitters reduced to five games on appeal.

Kelly was originally penalized eight games by Major League Baseball on July 29, a day after throwing a 96 mph fastball near the head of Houston’s Alex Bregman and two curveballs that brushed back Carlos Correa.

The Dodgers on Wednesday confirmed the reduced penalty.

Kelly went on the 10-day injured list retroactive to last Sunday with right shoulder inflammation. He will serve his suspension when he returns.

After striking out Corea, Kelly curled his lip into a pouting expression and exchanged words with the shortstop.

Benches cleared after Kelly’s actions during the sixth inning of Los Angeles’ 5-2 win at Houston in the teams’ first meeting since it was revealed the Astros stole signs en route to a 2017 World Series title over the Dodgers.

Dodgers manager Dave Roberts served his one-game suspension the same day the penalty was handed down. Astros manager Dusty Baker was fined an undisclosed amount.

Kelly denied that he purposely threw at the Astros. He has previously been suspended in his career for throwing at a batter.

The penalties were imposed by former pitcher Chris Young, MLB’s senior vice president of baseball operations, who issued his first ruling since taking over the job from Joe Torre.