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The Daily Chop: Charlie Morton debuts, Ronald Acuña Jr. healthy and more

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Morton tossed three scoreless innings Sunday against Boston.

MLB: Boston Red Sox at Atlanta Braves Nathan Ray Seebeck-USA TODAY Sports

Charlie Morton made his 2021 debut for the Atlanta Braves Sunday in a 5-4 Grapefruit League win over the Boston Red Sox. Morton allowed three baserunners but was able to keep the Red Sox in check tossing three scoreless innings to go along with three strikeouts. Morton wasn’t the only Braves pitcher to make his spring debut as Victor Arano worked a scoreless ninth. Arano was a delayed arrival to camp due to visa issues. He has battled injury over the last couple of seasons, but could be an interesting option for the bullpen that could use another right-handed power arm.

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Ronald Acuña Jr. had to gut his way through the 2020 season thanks to a lingering wrist injury. Now fully healthy, he has his eyes on a big season ahead and a World Series trip for Atlanta.

MLB News

Cleveland sent Franmil Reyes and Jose Ramirez home Saturday morning after they broke COVID-19 protocols following Friday’s game. Cleveland reported the violation to the league. Both have been retested and now the team awaits word from the league.

Astros’ top pitching prospect Forrest Whitley has been diagnosed with a sprain of the ulnar collateral ligament in his pitching elbow. Whitley is seeking a second opinion but could be headed for season-ending Tommy John surgery.

The Washington Nationals released veteran reliever Jeremy Jeffress due to what was classified as “personal reasons.” Jeffress signed a minor league deal with the Nationals in February.