Sunday, April 22, 2018
Sports

Braves starter nears return

ATLANTA — LHP Mike Minor appears set to rejoin the Braves rotation on Saturday after completing his rehab from shoulder soreness, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported.

Minor rejoined Atlanta on Monday and is scheduled to throw a bullpen session today. If all goes well, he'll make his first start of the season against the Reds.

"Nothing is written in stone," Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez told the Journal-Constitution. "It's a two-way conversation and we'll go from there."

Minor went 13-9 with a 3.21 ERA last season while leading the team in innings (2042/3) and strikeouts (181). He'd be a boost to a rotation that has been surprisingly strong despite missing Minor and RHP Kris Medlen; Atlanta's starters went into Monday's games with a majors-best 1.54 ERA.

"(Do) I feel like they don't need me? Yeah," Minor said to laughter. "They've been doing great. I feel like our hitters, our pitchers, defense, they're playing really well without me. I want to be back, I want to help out, but I don't want to mess up anything either."

Minor had urinary tract surgery Dec. 31, which threw off his preseason routine and might have contributed to his shoulder soreness he experienced when he first starting ramping up before spring training.

"I'm coming in a little bit later," Minor said. "These guys have got a lot of starts ahead of me under their belt, so I think that's going to be the biggest different for me is I want to jump right in, I want to feel like I've continued from last year, but it's going to be just a little bit different."

CHISOX ACE TO DL: White Sox LHP Chris Sale is headed to the 15-day disabled list for the first time in his career with a strained flexor muscle. An MRI exam showed no ligament damage. Sale will miss at least tonight's start against the Tigers and Sunday's against the Rays. Sale, 25, is 3-0 with a 2.30 ERA.

UECKER STATUE: The Brewers plan a private unveiling Friday of a last-row statue paying tribute to broadcaster Bob Uecker. The placement of the statue at Miller Park refers to an advertising campaign in which an usher tells Uecker he's in the wrong seat. Uecker stands and boasts, "I must be in the front row." He's then relocated to the back.

NO CONTRITION: Brewers CF Carlos Gomez said he has no plans to apologize for his behavior in Sunday's game, when his bat flip and slow trot appeared to anger the Pirates, setting off a brawl.

ASTROS: RHP Scott Feldman will be placed on the 15-day disabled list with right biceps tendinitis.

A'S: LHP Sean Doolittle's five-year contract is worth $10.5 million, and the deal would increase to $13.75 million if he becomes eligible for salary arbitration after this season.

INDIANS: DH Jason Giambi, 43, was activated from the disabled list and batted seventh against the Royals after missing the first 18 games recovering from broken rib.

PIRATES: LHP Wandy Rodriguez went on the 15-day disabled list because of right knee inflammation.

REDS: LH closer Aroldis Chapman, out since being hit in the face by a line drive during spring training, is scheduled to throw live batting practice Wednesday.

ROCKIES: OF Michael Cuddyer will go on the 15-day disabled list with a strained left hamstring.

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