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Tuesday May 24th, 2022 5:25PM

LEADING OFF: White Sox eager for Moncada, Reds get Castillo

By The Associated Press
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A look at what's happening around the majors today:

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HAKUNA MONCADA

The scraped-up White Sox hope third baseman Yoán Moncada can make his season debut when Chicago opens a three-game home series against Cleveland. The 26-year-old Moncada has been out since the last week of spring training with a strained right oblique, one of several key players sidelined for the South Siders this season.

The White Sox have won six straight to climb back over .500 for the first time since April 20 despite still missing sluggers Eloy Jiménez and Andrew Vaughn and starter Lance Lynn. Right-hander Michael Kopech (0-0, 1.17 ERA) will start the opener against the Guardians’ Zach Plesac (1-3, 4.44).

WELCOME BACK

Luis Castillo makes his season debut on the mound for Cincinnati against NL Central-leading Milwaukee. Castillo, a potential trade chip for the struggling Reds, has been sidelined with a right shoulder strain. He was an All-Star and a 15-game winner in 2019 but fell off to 8-16 with a 3.98 ERA in 33 starts and 187 2/3 innings last year, when he tied for the National League lead with 75 walks.

Cincinnati just took two of three from Pittsburgh to win a series for the first time this season, improving the majors’ worst record to 5-23.

IN THE SWING

Braves star Ronald Acuña Jr. has picked up right where he left off after getting hurt last season.

Acuña doubled, singled and stole a base Sunday in a 9-2 win over Milwaukee, extending his on-base streak to an NL-best 23 games dating to June 25. Boston’s J.D. Martinez has the majors’ longest current string at 27 games.

Acuña tore his knee last summer and missed the rest of the season when Atlanta went on to win the World Series. The dynamic outfielder has played nine games this year.

ROUGH STORY

Trevor Story got booed at Fenway Park this weekend, continuing his tough start for the Red Sox.

A big hitter and two-time All-Star with Colorado, he signed a $140 million, six-year contract to join Boston and shift from shortstop to second base.

Story went 0 for 4 Sunday in a loss to the White Sox, leaving him with a .194 batting average. He hasn't homered in 24 games for his new team.

Boston (10-19) has lost a season-worst five in a row and 14 of 18. The Red Sox open a series Tuesday at Atlanta.

SOPHOMORE SLUMP

The Cubs have sent struggling first baseman Frank Schwindel to Triple-A Iowa, a year after he was a bright spot for Chicago.

The 29-year-old Schwindel hit .342 with 13 homers and 40 RBIs in 56 games for the Cubs after he was claimed off waivers from Oakland. But he has struggled of late, hitting .186 (13 for 70) over his last 19 games.

“Somebody that we believe in, but need him to kind of get going a little bit,” manager David Ross said. “Get down there, work on some things, take a little bit of the pressure off, and let him continue to get back to what we expect him to be and what he expects himself to be.”

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More AP MLB: https://apnews.com/MLB and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports

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