HOUSTON ( Associated Press) – HOUSTON ( Associated Press) – Houston right-hander Lance McCullers Jr. suffered a small cut on his throwing elbow when he hit a bottle as the team celebrated winning the American League Division Series.
“Unfortunately, after the win in Seattle, I hit my elbow on the remaining bottle of champagne,” McCullers said.
The pitcher was fine, except for the swelling caused by the incident, and the team opted to give him an extra day’s rest.
Houston, who leads 2-0 in the American League Championship Series, will start Christian Javier in Game 3 at the New York Yankees on Saturday. McCullers will handle Game 4 on Sunday night.
The winning team of the series will be the one that gets four wins.
“It was nobody’s fault,” McCullers said. “That was an accident. Let’s not worry”.
The McCullers said they threw 35 pitches out of the bullpen on Friday. He said he is feeling well and will not be limited in his start on Sunday.
To explain how he got hurt during a clubhouse party, the pitcher said, “My inner elbow hit the bottle when someone was walking behind me and others were walking.”
“We weren’t getting wild. I was just standing there. That guy passed by and hit me in the same part.”
McCullers is not the first pitcher to be injured during this season’s celebrations. Phillies reliever David Roberson missed the NL Division Series when he hurt his calf while jumping while celebrating Bryce Harper’s home run in the wild-card round.
Javier played 1 1/3 in relief in Houston’s 8–7 win in the ALDS opener, but has not started since their October 1 victory over Tampa Bay.
The 25-year-old Dominican started and scored 13 runs in seven innings in the game, with the Astros thrashing the Yankees 3–0 at home or the reliever giving him no hits.
Gerrit Cole, who will be New York’s starter on Saturday, lost that game.
McCullers began Houston’s marathon 18-innings victory over Seattle in Game 3 of the Division Series in which he swept the Mariners.
He allowed two hits and scored seven runs in six shutout innings before being injured in a 1–0 victory as the Astros celebrated their sixth consecutive berth in the AL Championship Series.
McCullers wrapped Game 7 of the 2017 ALCS with 24 straight curve balls to retire the last five Yankees batsmen down the order.