The Los Angeles Angels benefit from missing Chris Sale and Eduardo Rodriguez, two of the majors’ 10 best pitchers in terms of WAR and two of the 30 best starters on the Player Rater, in the Boston Red Sox’s rotation during their week-opening series.
Cora had Andrew Benintendi leading off for the second consecutive day, but he changed things defensively from Sunday by inserting Brock Holt in Betts’ usual spot in right field.
Betts, who was originally scheduled to play against the Braves on Sunday, was scratched just before the first pitch with left side tightness. Blake Swihart started in left field for Boston.
Betts is also tied for the American League lead in home runs (17) and doubles (19). He has also registered a .437 on base percentage and tallied 37 RBIs.
The Red Sox have opened the season with a 36-16 record and have won six of their last seven games.
Brewers: LF Ryan Braun, who is batting .236 with eight home runs and 31 RBI, had a cryotherapy injection in his troublesome right thumb Wednesday in Los Angeles. It’s the first time this season and fifth overall that he’s undergone the procedure to freeze the nerve. He did not play.
Cain came out in the top of the fifth with a right hamstring cramp. He hit a sacrifice fly in the fourth before exiting in what the team called a precautionary move. Counsell said Cain will be in the lineup Friday.
As a hitter, he’s slashing .308/.364/.582 with six home runs, 19 RBIs and five doubles in 91 at-bats. The 23-year-old two-way star has exceeded his lofty expectations, but it may be a while before he makes his next start.
Bochy said after Tuesday night’s game that Sam Dyson would be his regular closer. Dyson came in to relieve Will Smith and record the final two outs on a double play for his second save as the Giants came away with a 6-3 win over Miami.
The manager doesn’t consider Mark Melancon — signed to a $62 million, four-year deal before last season to work the ninth — ready for the role after a series of injuries.
Your closer is somebody who has to be resilient, and I’m not sure that Mark’s at that stage right now, Bochy said before Tuesday’s game.
Hunter Strickland’s blown save Monday night against the Marlins ultimately led to him punching a door in frustration and fracturing his pitching hand. Ben Margot/AP Photo
The Giants have been hit hard by injuries this season. Ace Madison Bumgarner broke the pinkie finger on his left hand when he was hit by a line drive in spring training. Evan Longoria also broke a bone in his finger last week when he was hit by a pitch. And Brandon Belt has been out with an appendectomy.