MLB Notes: Indians' Jason Kipnis expected to miss Opening Day with shoulder injury

MLB Notes: Indians' Jason Kipnis expected to miss Opening Day with shoulder injury

GOODYEAR, Ariz. --  Cleveland Indians second baseman Jason Kipnis is likely to miss opening day because of a sore right shoulder.

Indians manager Terry Francona said Sunday that Kipnis will be shut down for the next two weeks to let him recover.

Kipnis has been dealing with the problem this spring and had a cortisone shot two weeks ago.

Kipnis is a two-time All-Star. He hit .275 with 23 home runs and 82 RBIs last season, and then homered twice in the World Series loss to the Cubs.

Minus Kipnis, the Indians could use Michael Martinez at second base or perhaps shift Jose Ramirez over from third base.

RED SOX: Price tests out sore throwing elbow with 25 practice pitches
FORT MYERS, Fla. -- Red Sox left-hander David Price was ahead of schedule for the first step in his recovery from a sore elbow, throwing into a net in a batting cage.

Manager John Farrell said Price made 25 easy tosses Saturday before a Red Sox split squad played the Tampa Bay Rays.

"The range of motion, the freeness to the movement is all positive," Farrell said. "It was just throwing into the net, just to get his arm moving - a little bit ahead of what we laid out yesterday. But that's based on how he feels and the positivity towards it."

Price is still a ways away from pitching off a mound (see full story)

REDS: DeScalfani has sore pitching elbow; could miss start of the season
GOODYEAR, Ariz. -- Top Cincinnati Reds starter Anthony DeSclafani could miss the start of the season for a second straight year because of a sore pitching elbow.

The right-hander has been sidelined during spring training because of the elbow. He was expected to make his first appearance on Monday, but he was sore after throwing a bullpen session. DeSclafani was sent back to Cincinnati on Sunday for an MRI and further examination.

"After the doctors examine him, we'll have a better idea of whether this is a minor or major setback," general manager Dick Williams said.

DeSclafani was in line to start opening day last season before he strained an oblique late during camp. He missed the first two months of the season as the injury lingered. He wound up making 20 starts and going 9-5 with a 3.28 ERA (see full story)

DIAMONDBACKS: Drury excited about move to second base
SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. (AP) – After a season on the go, Brandon Drury is happy to know he'll primarily play second base this season for the Arizona Diamondbacks.

He appeared in 62 games in left field as a rookie last year, 32 in right, 29 at third, 16 at second and even one at first.

"It will be a piece of cake for him this year by just focusing on one position," said teammate Chris Owings, who split time last year mostly between shortstop and center. "It's nice when you can go out and just take groundballs at second base. You can work on being in a shift one day. You can work on double plays one day. If he can focus on that versus worrying about, `Am I playing left or right or second or third?' then I think he's going to have a great year."

After making his big league debut in September 2015, Drury he hit .282 with 16 homers and 59 RBIs last year -- including .357 with six homers and 19 RBIs from Sept. 1 on.

 

Instant Replay: Phillies 4, Reds 3

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Instant Replay: Phillies 4, Reds 3

BOX SCORE

The Phillies rallied for a 4-3 walk-off win over the Cincinnati Reds on Saturday.

Tommy Joseph won it with a single up the middle with no outs in the bottom of the ninth. The hit scored Aaron Altherr, who had singled and moved to second on a wild pitch.

The Phils have won just six of their last 27 games. Joseph has had a walk-off, game-winning hit in the last two wins.

In addition to Joseph, who also homered, the star of the game was the Phillies' bullpen. Four Phils' relievers combined on 3 2/3 scoreless innings after starter Jerad Eickhoff exited. The Phillies' bullpen is riding a 19 2/3-innings scoreless streak.

Starting pitching report
Eickhoff allowed eight hits and three runs over 5 1/3 innings. He gave up a bunt hit and a two-run homer to the first two batters of the game but took a 3-2 lead into the sixth inning. He allowed a leadoff single and a one-out RBI double in that inning as the Reds tied the game at 3-3.

Veteran Bronson Arroyo, back in action at age 40 after recovering from surgery the last two seasons, gave up three runs — all on solo homers — over five innings.

Bullpen report
Good work by Edubray Ramos to get two outs in the sixth to strand a runner in scoring position and preserve a 3-3 tie. Pat Neshek, Joaquin Benoit and Hector Neris each followed with a scoreless inning. Neris struck out dangerous Joey Votto on a splitter with a man on base to end the top of the ninth. He got the win.

Austin Brice pitched two scoreless innings for the Reds. Michael Lorenzen took the loss. He gave up two hits in the ninth. Joseph's game-winning hit came on a 97 mph heater.

At the plate
Cesar Hernandez, Michael Saunders and Joseph all clouted solo homers for the Phillies. Joseph has six homers in his last 21 games.

Zack Cozart smacked a two-run homer against Eickhoff in the first inning. The Reds tied the game on a one-out double by Scooter Gennett in the sixth.

Remembering Bunning
Jim Bunning died Friday night. Larry Bowa recalled the impact that the Hall of Famer had on his career (see story).

Up next
The series concludes Sunday afternoon. Zach Eflin (0-2, 5.36) and Scott Feldman (3-4, 3.99) are the pitchers.

Larry Bowa on Jim Bunning: His words 'resonated throughout my career'

Larry Bowa on Jim Bunning: His words 'resonated throughout my career'

Beyond the center field wall at Citizens Bank Park, retired Phillies uniform No. 14 was draped in black cloth on Saturday afternoon.
 
Jim Bunning, who wore that number during six seasons with the club, died late Friday night at his home in Kentucky. The Hall of Fame pitcher, who went on to serve in the U.S. House of Representatives and U.S. Senate, was 85.
 
Bunning was a workhorse right-hander who pitched with smarts and competitiveness during his 17 seasons in the majors. He also pitched with the Detroit Tigers, Pittsburgh Pirates and Los Angeles Dodgers. He averaged 35 starts and won 89 games during his six seasons with the Phillies. He also authored one of the most iconic moments in club history when he pitched the franchise's first perfect game on a searing hot Father's Day in 1964 against the New York Mets at Shea Stadium.
 
Talking about a perfect game as it is unfolding is considered baseball taboo. To mention it is to risk jinxing it. But Bunning broke tradition and in the late innings of that game talked openly with teammates in the dugout about the possibility of finishing off the feat.
 
"Jim Bunning was way too practical of a man to worry about a jinx," former teammate Rick Wise once said. Wise pitched the second game of that Father's Day doubleheader. It started 20 minutes after Bunning completed his perfecto and Wise had trouble finding a ball and a catcher to warm him up because everyone was busy celebrating the perfect game.
 
Bunning went 224-184 with a 3.27 ERA in 591 career games. He led the American League with 20 wins in 1957. He led the league in innings twice and strikeouts three times. He was elected to the Hall of Fame by the Veterans Committee in 1996 and went into Cooperstown as a Phillie.
 
Bunning had two tours with the Phillies, 1964-67 and 1970-71, and was a straight-laced competitor who expected effort and excellence from his teammates. During his second time through Philadelphia, as he was nearing the end of his career, he was a teammate of a young shortstop named Larry Bowa.
 
"I remember him coming up to me and saying, ‘Don’t ever, ever lose your energy. I don’t want to turn around and see your head dropping because you’re 0 for 3,’" Bowa recalled Saturday. "He said, ‘I don’t ever want to see that.’ He said, ‘You’ve got to be accountable. You’ve got to play with energy. You’ve got to play every inning of every game.
 
"I made an error one day and he turned around — I didn’t even want to make eye contact with him — he turned around and he was rubbing the ball and looked at me and I went, 'Yeah, I know I should have caught it.' He was just that intense."
 
Bunning had a mean streak on the mound. He led the league in hit batsman four times.
 
Bowa recalled the time Ron Hunt — a notorious plunkee — did not get out of the way of a Bunning breaking ball. As Hunt ran to first base, Bunning admonished him.
 
"He went over and said, 'Ron, if you want to get hit, I’ll hit you next time and it won’t be a breaking ball.' That’s what kind of competitor he was."
 
Bunning suffered a stroke last year.
 
"I knew he had been sick," Bowa said. "Tremendous, tremendous person who taught me a lot about the game in a short time.
 
"He always gave me good advice. He talked about self-evaluation with me all the time. He said you’ve got to be accountable in this game, no one gives you anything in this game. I never had a pitcher mentor me like he did. In spring training, he told me, ‘Keep your mouth shut and your eyes and ears open.’ It was that simple. I said, ‘Yes, sir.’
 
"When a guy like that takes the time with someone who is just starting, it’s, I mean, it resonated throughout my career."