LEADING OFF: Verlander aims for 7th win in row, Acuña ailing

May 26, 2022, 12:32 PM | Updated: May 27, 2022, 12:33 am
Houston Astros starting pitcher Justin Verlander throws during the first inning of a baseball game ...

Houston Astros starting pitcher Justin Verlander throws during the first inning of a baseball game against the Texas Rangers Saturday, May 21, 2022, in Houston. (AP Photo/David J. Phillip)

(AP Photo/David J. Phillip)

A look at what’s happening around the majors today:

___

V FOR VICTORY

Astros ace Justin Verlander has been as dominant as ever in his return from Tommy John surgery, going 6-1 with a 1.22 ERA in eight starts.

Verlander has a 19-inning scoreless streak and hasn’t allowed a run in his last three outings.

The 39-year-old righty didn’t pitch last season while recovering from his elbow operation. The eight-time All-Star is already 2-0 this year against the Mariners — he’ll face them again in Seattle as he tries to win his seventh straight decision overall.

Chris Flexen (1-6, 4.98) pitches the series opener for the Mariners. After throwing well but getting little run support to begin the season, he has struggled in giving up 14 earned runs in his past three starts.

HEALING UP

The Braves will see how right fielder Ronald Acuña Jr. is feeling after he was scratched from two starts because of tightness in his right quadriceps tightness.

Acuña is batting .292 with two homers, eight stolen bases and a .400 on-base average. The 24-year-old was sidelined for the second half of last season after tearing his knee.

The two-time All-Star and 2018 NL Rookie of the Year recently missed five games recently with right groin tightness.

Atlanta hosts the Marlins to begin the weekend.

RED ALERT

Kyle Farmer, Nick Senzel and the Cincinnati Reds look to keep their bats booming when they face the Giants at Great American Ball Park.

The Reds put up their highest run total since 1999 when they whacked the Cubs 20-5 on Thursday. Farmer homered and drove in five runs — he and Senzel each had four hits.

San Francisco starts a 10-game trip when lefty Carlos Rodón (4-3, 3.43 ERA) faces the Reds.

CARPE DIEM

A week after he was cut loose from his minor league team, three-time All-Star Matt Carpenter wound up back in the majors — and made an instant impact for the New York Yankees.

Ailing in a couple of spots, the team with the top record in baseball signed the 36-year-old Carpenter on Thursday. Hours later, he scored two runs as the Yankees won 7-2 at Tampa Bay.

The infielder recently was released by the Rangers’ Triple-A team. Carpenter hit .169 in 130 games for St. Louis last year; the previous season, he batted only .186 for the Cardinals.

Carpenter entered the lineup for a series opener at Tampa Bay as the designated hitter when center fielder Aaron Hicks was scratched with a tight hamstring. Aaron Judge was moved from DH to center. Infielder DJ LeMahieu is slowed by a sore left wrist and Josh Donaldson is on the COVID-19 injured list. Donaldson also is appealing a one-game suspension imposed by MLB for making an inappropriate comment to White Sox star Tim Anderson.

Carpenter drew a walk and was hit by a pitch in going 0 for 2.

“It happened fast and now I’m here and I couldn’t be more excited about it,” Carpenter said.

___

More AP MLB: https://apnews.com/hub/mlb and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

AP

Charleston forward Babacar Faye (35) is guarded by Hofstra forward Warren Williams (0) during the f...
Associated Press

Estrada, Hofstra end No. 18 Charleston’s 20-game win streak

CHARLESTON, S.C. (AP) — Aaron Estrada scored 25 points and Darlinstone Dubar added 18 as Hofstra ended No. 18 College of Charleston’s 20-game win streak with an 85-81 victory on Saturday. The Pride (15-8, 8-2 Colonial Athletic Association) were down 28-20 early before rallying past the Cougars (21-2, 9-1), who had not lost since falling […]
16 hours ago
Former Tennessee basketball players Alan Houston and Candace Parker walk to the court as they were ...
Associated Press

Candace Parker to sign with Las Vegas Aces

LAS VEGAS (AP) — Former MVP Candace Parker announced on social media Saturday that she would sign with the defending champion Las Vegas Aces. Parker spent the past two seasons playing for her hometown Sky, leading Chicago to the WNBA championship in 2021. She posted on Instagram that Chicago would always be her home, but […]
16 hours ago
Colorado Avalanche center Alex Newhook, front, is hugged by center Andrew Cogliano after scoring a ...
Associated Press

Newhook scores on birthday, Avalanche beat Blues 4-2

DENVER (AP) — Alex Newhook scored on his birthday for the second straight season, and the Colorado Avalanche beat the St. Louis Blues 4-2 on Saturday for their seventh win in eight games. Evan Rodrigues, J.T. Compher and Matt Nieto also scored for the Avalanche, and Logan O’Connor had two assists. Alexandar Georgiev stopped 26 […]
16 hours ago
Philadelphia 76ers' Joel Embiid, right, dribbles the ball as Denver Nuggets' Nikola Jokic defends d...
Associated Press

Embiid scores 47 as 76ers beat Jokic, Nuggets 126-119

PHILADELPHIA (AP) — Joel Embiid won the battle of MVP candidates with 47 points and 18 rebounds as the Philadelphia 76ers extended their winning streak to seven games with a 126-119 win over Nikola Jokic and the Denver Nuggets on Saturday. Jokic and Embiid have finished first and second in voting for the NBA’s Most […]
16 hours ago
Evan Bates, left, and Madison Chock perform during the rhythm dance program at the U.S. figure skat...
Associated Press

Chock and Bates defend title, win 4th U.S. ice dance gold

SAN JOSE, Calif. (AP) — Madison Chock and Evan Bates successfully defended their ice dancing title Saturday at the U.S. Figure Skating Championships, scoring 137.85 in the free dance for a top-place total score of 229.75. The recently engaged couple has medaled at nationals in every season since 2013. That’s 11 straight years, which matches […]
2 days ago
Houston forward J'Wan Roberts (13) reacts after a Cincinnati shot clock violation during the second...
Associated Press

Walker, No. 3 Houston rally for a 75-69 win over Cincinnati

HOUSTON (AP) — Jarace Walker had a career-high 25 points and seven rebounds, and No. 3 Houston rallied from an 11-point second-half deficit to defeat Cincinnati 75-69 on Saturday. Walker, who scored 13 points in the second half, was 10 of 14 from the field. “I was just feeling good tonight,” Walker said. “The ball […]
2 days ago
LEADING OFF: Verlander aims for 7th win in row, Acuña ailing