Baseball notes: Cincinnati Reds activate closer Aroldis Chapman

Aroldis Chapman missed season's first six weeks after being hit in the face by a line drive in spring training
Reds say Chapman will move right back into the closer role, which had been occupied by Jonathan Broxton

The Cincinnati Reds activated reliever Aroldis Chapman from the 15-day disabled list before Saturday's game against Colorado, and Manager Bryan Price said the hard-throwing left-hander would move immediately back into the closer role.

Chapman had surgery March 20, a day after being struck in the left eye and nose by a line drive during a spring training game. Jonathan Broxton converted five of six save chances in his absence.


John Axford was demoted from the Cleveland Indians' closer role. Manager Terry Francona said Axford, 1-3 with a 4.91 earned-run average and nine saves in 11 chances, would be replaced by a four-man group that includes Cody Allen, Scott Atchison, Marc Rzepczynski and Bryan Shaw. . . . Chicago White Sox ace Chris Sale, who hasn't pitched since April 17 because of a muscle strain near his left elbow, threw 50 pitches in a simulated game and said he remained on track to return from the DL in two weeks. . . . Atlanta placed right-handed setup man Jordan Walden on the DL because of a strained left hamstring. . . . Milwaukee third baseman Aramis Ramirez left Saturday's game against the Yankees after getting hurt while fielding a bouncer in the fourth inning. He appeared to grab the back of his left leg as he left the field.

Copyright © 2015, Los Angeles Times