El Dorado News-Times

Astros’ Alvarez has sore hand, won’t take BP for a few days

- By Charles Odum

Houston Astros All-Star Yordan Alvarez has a sore left hand that will keep him out of batting practice for a few days in spring training.

Alvarez told reporters on Tuesday that soreness in the hand was an issue at times last year and continued to “flare up a bit at times” during the offseason.

Despite the soreness, Alvarez hit .306 with 37 homers and 97 RBIs and finished third in the AL MVP voting for the World Series champion Astros.

Speaking through a translator, Alvarez said he told team officials about the sore hand when he reported to camp.

“It's just something we're going to monitor,” said Alvarez, a native of Cuba. “I felt a little bit of discomfort but it's something we're going to monitor and work on. I'm going to take the next couple days off here like I did in the offseason and prepare but it's not something that's going to be an issue during the season.”

Alvarez had only three hits in the World Series, including a 450-foot, three-run homer that powered the Astros to a 4-1 win over the Philadelph­ia Phillies in the decisive Game 6.

‘WILD THING’ NUMBER CHANGE FOR STRIDER Atlanta Braves right-hander Spencer Strider has changed his number from 65 to 99 for his second season.

The hard-throwing Strider finished second to teammate Michael Harris II in the NL Rookie of the Year voting and then plotted a uniform number change. He was inspired by the hard-throwing fictional star of the baseball movie “Major League.”

“Picking your jersey number in baseball to me has always been something of importance and my favorite movie is Major League and I like Rick Vaughn, so I see some similariti­es between Wild Thing and myself,” Strider said.

Strider, 24, was signed to a $75 million, six-year contract after posting an 11-5 record and 2.67 ERA in 31 games, including 20 starts.

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