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MLB News and Notes for May 31st

As teams around MLB approach the one-third mark of the season, teams are starting to separate themselves as contenders and pretenders. While the main focus has been on the field, there has been plenty of news off the field as well. Let’s take a look at some of the biggest stories from around the league.

Marcell Ozuna Facing Legal Issues

Due to a couple of dislocated fingers, Marcell Ozuna was recently placed on the injured list by the Atlanta Braves. Sadly, Ozuna was in the news for much worse reasons this week.

On Saturday, Ozuna was arrested on charges of domestic violence, including misdemeanor battery and aggravated assault strangulation. According to Jeff Passan of ESPN and Miles Garrett of WSBT, the arrest was made in Sandy Springs, Georgia.

In addition to any legal issues that Ozuna may face, Major League Baseball will also open an investigation which may lead to a league-based suspension.

This comes on the heels of the Braves re-signing Ozuna to a four-year deal this offseason. Prior to being put on the injured list, Ozuna was hitting .213/.288/.356 with seven home runs, 26 runs batted in, and 21 runs scored.

The Braves have the second-best odds to win the N.L. East at +260. They are currently 3.5 games behind the Mets for the top spot.

Yankees Place Kluber, Voit On Injured List

The Yankees roster took a blow this week as they placed starting pitcher Corey Kluber and first baseman Luke Voit on the injured list. Manager Aaron Boone indicated that Kluber will be out at least eight weeks due to a strain in his rotator cuff, while Voit has an oblique strain that he is battling.

Kluber was signed to a one-year, $11 million contract this offseason. On the year, he is 4-3 in 10 starts with a 3.04 ERA, 1.20 WHIP, and has struck out 55 in 53.1 innings pitched. The highlight of his season thus far was a no-hitter thrown against the Texas Rangers on May 19th.

Due to injuries, Voit only has 44 at bats thus far this season. In that span, the 26-year-old is hitting just .182/.280/.250 with a single home run.

The Yankees are currently 29-24, 4.5 games out of first in the A.L. East. Despite their current standings, they are still the favorites to win the division at -115.

Mets Shut Down Syndergaard, Ready To Activate Alonso

No team has been decimated with injuries to the same extent as the New York Mets. Just to name a few off of the exhaustive list, include Pete Alonso, Michael Conforto, Jeff McNeil, Taijuan Walker, Kevin Pillar, and others.

While already injured, the Mets got some more bad news this week as they are shutting down starting pitcher Noah Syndergaard on his road to recovery from Tommy John surgery. According to manager Luis Rojas, Syndergaard will be shut down for six weeks with inflammation in his throwing elbow after having to leave a rehab start earlier this week.

Syndergaard last pitched in 2019, when he went 10-8 with a 4.28 ERA, 1.23 WHIP, and struck out 202 in 197.2 innings. While the setback does not prevent him from pitching in the majors this season, it likely pushes back his earliest return to August.

On the positive side, ESPN’s Buster Olney reports that the Mets will be bringing the first baseman, Pete Alonso, off of the injured list before their game on Monday. Alonso had been on the injured list with a hand sprain.

This season, Alonso is hitting .236/.336/.433 with six home runs, 19 runs batted in, and 21 runs scored.

Despite all of the injuries, the New York Mets are amazingly still 25-20 and in first place in the N.L. East. They are currently -145 to win the division and +1000 to win the World Series.

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