MLB News and Rumors

Lance McCullers Provides Strange Reason for Starting Rotation Shakeup

Tyler Maher
Lance McCullers Jr. gave a surprising reason for the Houston Astros' rotation shakeup in the ALCS.
Lance McCullers Jr. gave a surprising reason for the Houston Astros' rotation shakeup in the ALCS. / ASSOCIATED PRESS
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There was a bit of a surprise on Friday when Houston Astros manager Dusty Baker revealed his pitching plans for Games 3 and 4 of the ALCS against the New York Yankees. Rather than pitching Game 3 as expected, Lance McCullers Jr. will go in Game 4 with Cristian Javier taking his place in Game 3.

McCullers gave an interesting explanation for the switch.

Lance McCullers News

According to McCullers, he was hit in the elbow by a champagne bottle during the team's ALDS victory celebration over the Seattle Mariners on Saturday. In the name of caution, the Astros pushed his start back a day to give his elbow time to heal.

This means McCullers will now have a full week of rest between starts. Given that he only made eight starts in the regular season due to injury, that probably isn't a bad thing.

If Houston wins Game 3, McCullers will be looking to finish off the sweep in Game 4 at Yankee Stadium. He's coming off a dominant outing in the clinching game of the ALDS, where he held the Mariners to two hits and two walks over six scoreless innings, lowering his career postseason ERA to 2.56.

While odds for Game 4 haven't been released yet, the Astros are currently -600 favorites to win the ALCS on FanDuel Sportsbook's MLB odds.

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Game odds refresh periodically and are subject to change.

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