PORT CHARLOTTE, Fla. — New York Yankees manager Aaron Boone says it’s too early to know if first baseman Greg Bird will be sidelined for Opening Day on Thursday at Toronto because of inflammation in his right foot.
Boone said the team should learn Bird’s status after he is evaluated Monday by a specialist in New York.
Bird was scratched from the starting lineup in a split-squad road game Saturday against Atlanta. Boone said CT and MRI exams showed no structural damage.
If the oft-injured Bird needs to go on the disabled list, Tyler Austin and Neil Walker could get time at first base.
Bird fouled a ball off his right ankle in the Yankees’ final spring training game in 2017. He had surgery on the ankle in July and was limited to just 48 games. Yankees general manager Brian Cashman said Saturday that the current soreness is in a similar area.
Bird hit .190 overall last year but had eight homers and 25 RBIs in 29 games after he returned from the disabled list in late August.
The 25-year-old missed all of 2016 after having labrum surgery on his right shoulder.
Oakland A’s clinch third straight playoff berth, but ‘a lot bigger goals’ remain
OAKLAND, Calif. — An AL West title will mean so much more than simply clinching a playoff berth given how the past two seasons have gone for the Oakland Athletics.
Then, the A’s might let loose and celebrate a little. But not just yet.
“Clinching the playoffs is the goal every single year. Exciting, but winning the division I think is going to be a lot better for us,” winning pitcher Chris Bassitt said. “It was literally another win. We have a lot bigger goals.”
The A’s scoreboard read “Postseason Bound” high above the cardboard cutouts of fans filling the Oakland Coliseum.
Oakland is in the playoffs for the sixth time in nine seasons and now shifts its attention to the division title, which could be locked up Saturday. The A’s haven’t won the West since 2013, winning 97 games each of the past two seasons to finish in second place behind Houston and before losing the AL wild-card game both years.
Olson connected in the third inning of a balanced offensive attack for the A’s in the opener of the second round of the 2020 Bay Bridge Series.
Jake Lamb‘s RBI single in the first staked Bassitt to a quick lead. The right-hander struck out seven over 6 2/3 innings to win his third straight start.
“He’s been absolutely terrific,” manager Bob Melvin said, “probably as consistent as we’ve had all year.”
San Francisco hardly had to travel far to continue its road trip. The Giants were scheduled for games in Seattle earlier this week but smoke from all the West Coast wildfires created dangerous air quality and the clubs instead played at Oracle Park in San Francisco on Wednesday and Thursday. `
The A’s played a Monday doubleheader in Seattle, and players expressed concern about the air.
“The air quality is much better than we last saw it here, it certainly is better than Seattle, too,” Melvin said.
Right fielder Stephen Piscotty missed his fourth straight game with a sprained right knee. The A’s were going to put him through batting practice to determine his status for Saturday.
Also, right-hander Daniel Mengden was medically cleared from a positive COVID-19 test Aug. 28. He has been asymptomatic throughout and resumed throwing off the mound at the club’s San Jose alternate site Friday. He is slated for a simulated game Saturday.
Left-hander Jesus Luzardo starts for the A’s on Saturday afternoon, looking to end a four-start winless stretch in which he is 0-2.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
Los Angeles Angels’ Albert Pujols passes Willie Mays on all-time home run list
The 40-year-old Pujols connected for a solo homer with one out in the fifth inning. He sent Wes Benjamin‘s fastball on a 1-2 count over the wall in left field.
Pujols has hit five homers this season. He tied Mays last Sunday at Colorado.
It is only Pujols’ second home run since Aug. 4. He now trails only Barry Bonds (762), Hank Aaron (755), Babe Ruth (714) and Alex Rodriguez (696).
The Angels quickly congratulated Pujols on Twitter.
Congratulations, Albert. What an incredible accomplishment 🙌 pic.twitter.com/dxQObF7tI8
— Los Angeles Angels (@Angels) September 19, 2020
Pujols has one more season left on his contract with the Angels after this year.
Benjamin was the 428th different pitcher Pujols homered against in his career. Only Bonds has homered against more (449).
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
St. Louis Cardinals put pitcher Dakota Hudson on IL with forearm strain
Hudson left his start Thursday night after two innings due to what he described as discomfort in his right arm.
The 26-year-old is 3-2 with a 2.77 ERA in eight starts this season.
St. Louis added right-handed reliever Nabil Crismatt to take Hudson’s roster spot. Crismatt has a 3.24 ERA in 8 1/3 innings over six appearances this season.
Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.
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