Reds catcher Luke Maile scratched with sore hand, day after hit by pitch

Cincinnati Reds' Luke Maile, left, is checked after being hit by a pitch during the seventh inning of a baseball game against the New York Mets, Friday, Sept. 15, 2023, in New York. (AP Photo/Bebeto Matthews)

NEW YORK (AP) — Cincinnati Reds catcher Luke Maile was scratched from the starting lineup Saturday, one day after he was hit on the left hand by a pitch by the New York MetsGrant Hartwig.

Manager David Bell said Maile, who caught the first 18 big league starts for Saturday’s pitcher, Andrew Abbott, was able to catch but felt soreness trying to swing a bat. Maile was expected to undergo X-rays Saturday.

Maile scored on Jonathan India’s two-run homer and finished the game behind the plate in the Reds’ 5-3 victory on Friday.

Maile was slated to bat eighth Saturday but was replaced by Tyler Stephenson, who hit fifth. Christian Encarnacion-Strand, making his first big league start at third base, was moved from fifth to seventh, while fellow rookie Elly De La Cruz dropped a slot to eighth.