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When will Manny Machado return to Padres lineup this season?

We’ve got the latest updates for Manny Machado and when he’ll return in 2023.

Manny Machado of the San Diego Padres warms up prior to a game against the Kansas City Royals at PETCO Park on May 15, 2023 in San Diego, California. Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images

Manny Machado was forced from the San Diego Padres’ game against the Kansas City Royals on May 15 when he took a pitch off his hand. Initial X-rays came back negative, and the team was hopeful that the All-Star could avoid the injured list with a few days of rest, but it appears San Diego will be without its star third baseman for a bit.

Manny Machado injury update

Further testing revealed a hairline fracture in Machado’s third metacarpal bone, requiring the third baseman to be put on the injured list — his first IL stint since way back in 2014.

Machado had been among the most reliable players in the game in recent years, playing over 150 games in each of the last seven full seasons while posting an OPS+ below 110 just once over that time.

The Padres have yet to put a timetable on Machado’s return, but any significant absence will be a major blow to a San Diego offense that’s performed well below its payroll so far this season. Their team OPS currently sits just 22nd in baseball, and while Machado had been a big part of that — with just a .654 OPS on the year — his track record suggested that number was set to climb sooner rather than later. Ha-Seong Kim will likely slide over to third base while he’s out, with a combination of Jake Cronenworth and Rougned Odor handling second and the recently recalled Brandon Dixon pitching in at first.