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Yankees to manage 2B Torres after Friday fall

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Gleyber Torres‘ MRI on his right hamstring Saturday came back negative, but the New York Yankees still plan to be cautious with the second baseman as the regular season winds down.

Torres slipped after backhanding a grounder Friday night, prompting an audible gasp from the crowd at Yankee Stadium. He was pulled later and said he felt weakness in his lower legs. He was not in the lineup Saturday against the Toronto Blue Jays, although manager Aaron Boone said Torres was feeling good.

Prior to the Yankees’ announcement, Boone said the American League East champions will be careful with Torres over the final week of the regular season. New York has seven games remaining and won’t play its postseason opener until Oct. 4.

“I think he’s OK,” Boone said of Torres, “but the wear and tear of playing every day in the season, he’s been kind of taking care of himself every day and getting treatment on a lot of his lower half just as a maintenance thing, so certainly with him try to be a little more cautious.”

Torres, 22, leads the team with 38 homers and is hitting .284 with 90 RBIs and an .889 OPS. If Torres misses time, DJ LeMahieu would be New York’s primary second baseman, with Gio Urshela starting at third. LeMahieu was held out of the lineup for rest Saturday.

The 100-win Yankees are in a tight race with the Houston Astros for home-field advantage. Boone is trying to strike a balance between battling the Astros and resting his stars.

“Any ailments we’re dealing with, taking care of that trumps everything,” Boone said.

Edwin Encarnacion (oblique) could return to the lineup during the upcoming midweek series against the Tampa Bay Rays. He is a bit ahead of catcher Gary Sanchez (groin tightness), but Boone said Sanchez could be back for the final series at Texas. Boone is “confident” Sanchez will be ready for the playoff opener.

ESPN’s Marly Rivera and The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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Yankees to start Masahiro Tanaka vs. Astros’ Zack Greinke in Game 4 after postponement

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Game 4 of the American League Championship Series between the Houston Astros and New York Yankees has been postponed due to expected inclement weather in New York on Wednesday night.

First pitch for Game 4 will be 8:08 p.m. ET Thursday. Game 5 has been rescheduled for 7:08 p.m. ET Friday, which originally had been tabbed as a travel day, if necessary.

“It gives everybody a day off and an opportunity to collect ourselves,” Astros manager A.J. Hinch said. “It changes our pitching a little bit; how beneficial is probably easier to answer after I see how guys perform and how the pitching plays out.”

The Yankees — who were planning a bullpen day for Game 4 — have announced they will go back to Masahiro Tanaka on regular rest. He blanked the Astros over six innings in Game 1 on Saturday, throwing just 68 pitches during a 7-0 win.

The Astros will counter with Zack Greinke, also on regular rest. The 2009 Cy Young Award winner, who was acquired from Arizona at the July 31 trade deadline, has struggled through two starts for the Astros this postseason, including the Game 1 loss to the Yankees in which he allowed two homers and three runs in six innings.

In Game 5, the Yankees likely will start James Paxton against the Astros’ Justin Verlander.

The Astros have a 2-1 lead in the best-of-seven series. The winner will face the Washington Nationals in the World Series.

Having Wednesday off will be welcome for New York after manager Aaron Boone used five relievers to cover 4 2/3 innings in Tuesday’s 4-1 loss to the Astros. Starter Luis Severino threw 36 pitches in the first inning and was pulled in the fifth. Boone deployed key arms Chad Green, Tommy Kahnle, Adam Ottavino and Zack Britton in the loss, although none threw more than 11 pitches.

Games 6 and 7, if necessary, are not affected by Wednesday’s postponement and will be held in Houston on Saturday and Sunday.

Wednesday’s matchup is the first postseason game to be postponed since Game 4 of the National League Division Series between the Nationals and the Chicago Cubs in 2017, and the first LCS game to be called off since Game 3 of the Baltimore OriolesKansas City Royals series in 2014.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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Astros, Yankees to play Game 4 of ALCS on Thursday after rainout

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Game 4 of the American League Championship Series between the Houston Astros and New York Yankees has been postponed due to expected inclement weather in New York on Wednesday night.

First pitch for Game 4 will be on Thursday at 8:08 p.m. ET. Game 5 has been rescheduled for 7:08 p.m. ET Friday, which originally had been tabbed as a travel day, if necessary.

The Astros have a 2-1 lead in the best-of-seven series. The winner will face the Washington Nationals in the World Series.

The move could affect pitching plans for both teams. The Astros could bring back Zack Greinke for Game 4 on regular rest, and the Yankees — who were planning a bullpen day for Game 4 — could instead go back to Masahiro Tanaka on regular rest.

Tanaka blanked the Astros over six innings in Game 1 on Saturday while throwing just 68 pitches to get through the Houston lineup exactly two times.

Games 6 and 7, if necessary, are not affected by Wednesday’s postponement and will be held in Houston on Saturday and Sunday.

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Joe Maddon agrees to be new manager of Los Angeles Angels

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The Los Angeles Angels have reached an agreement with Joe Maddon to make him their next manager, the team announced Wednesday.

A source told ESPN that Maddon is expected to receive a three-year contract in the $12 million to $15 million range.

Maddon, 65, is returning to the Angels organization after spending five seasons with the Chicago Cubs and leading the franchise to its first World Series title in 108 years in 2016.

He had been linked to the Angels job ever since the team fired Brad Ausmus on Sept. 30, a day after Maddon and the Cubs announced they were parting ways.

The Angels finished 72-90 during Ausmus’ only season as manager.

Maddon spent 31 years in the Angels’ organization, the last six as Mike Scioscia’s bench coach from 2000 to 2005. Prior to joining the Cubs, he served nine years as Tampa Bay Rays manager, leading that team to its only World Series appearance in 2008.

Maddon signed a five-year, $25 million deal with the Cubs prior to the 2015 season, and the team finished above .500 in each of his five seasons. His .582 winning percentage ranks second all time in franchise history, behind only Frank Chance (768-389, .664, from 1905 to ’12).

In 2016, Maddon guided Chicago to 103 regular-season wins and then a long-awaited World Series title that postseason. He was credited with changing the culture and creating a loose atmosphere for his players during a pressure-filled time when they were picked by many to win it all.

Maddon inherits a franchise in turmoil following an Outside the Lines report that team employees allegedly were aware of Tyler Skaggs’ opioid use prior to his July 1 death and didn’t inform the commissioner’s office. The Angels could face significant sanctions from Major League Baseball if it finds the allegations were true.

ESPN’s Jeff Passan and Jesse Rogers contributed to this report.



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