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Odor’s suspension reduced to 7 games, starts Friday

ARLINGTON, Texas (AP) – Rangers second baseman Rougned Odor started serving his suspension Friday for punching Toronto’s Jose Bautista after the penalty was reduced from eight to seven games.

Odor was out of the lineup for the series opener against Pittsburgh. He will be eligible to return June 4 when Texas is home against Seattle.

Bautista was suspended one game, and he was serving that Friday, when the penalty was upheld a day after his appeal was heard.

The Rangers promoted former top prospect Jurickson Profar from Triple-A Round Rock, and he was in the lineup against the Pirates as the leadoff hitter playing second base. Odor had been leading off.

Odor’s penalty was cut by Major League Baseball special assistant John McHale Jr. The appeal over Odor’s role in a May 15 brawl between the Rangers and Blue Jays was heard Tuesday. The league disciplined 14 players and staff over the melee in Arlington .

The team has also placed right-handed pitcher Shawn Tolleson on MLB’s Family Medical Emergency List. That leave is a minimum three days and a maximum seven days.

Tolleson, who has 11 saves but lost his role as the Rangers closer after four blown saves, is going to be with his father, who is battling colon cancer.

Odor punched Bautista in the jaw in the top of the eighth inning of that May 15 game in Arlington after Bautista made a hard takeout slide at second base on Odor, which started the bench-clearing brawl. Bautista was on base after being hit with a pitch.

The only other Texas player suspended was shortstop Elvis Andrus, and he has already served his one-game suspension.

Profar hit .284 with five home runs and 26 RBIs in 41 games at Triple-A Round Rock this season. The switch-hitter played primarily shortstop for the Express before moving to second base earlier this month. His first game at second base was May 17, the same day the suspensions were announced.

The 23-year-old Profar has a career .231 batting average over 94 major league games with Texas in 2012 and 2013.

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