MLB injury report: Friday, May 5th
Ronald Acuna Jr. (knee), Atlanta Braves — Acuna might take more of a beating than any other non-catcher in baseball. A couple days after getting drilled in the shoulder by a pitch against the New York Mets, the early NL MVP frontrunner crumpled to the ground after fouling a ball off his knee:
Ronald Acuña Jr. was in pain after fouling a ball off his knee— Talkin’ Baseball (@TalkinBaseball_) May 4, 2023
He continued the at-bat pic.twitter.com/FvD4BvNW4E
Acuna finished the at-bat and took the field for the next half-inning but was eventually forced to leave. Manager Brian Snitker doesn’t sound too concerned, but he did mention that the outfielder was having some trouble bending his knee — so don’t be surprised if Acuna has to miss a game or two.
Michael Harris II (knee), Atlanta Braves — The team also got some relief regarding its other dynamic young outfielder, who injured his knee in a scary incident at first base on Wednesday:
Michael Harris II didn't suffer any ligament damage in his knee. He hyperextended it, and eventually felt lucky it wasn't worse.— Justin Toscano (@JustinCToscano) May 5, 2023
“I was thinking I was gonna have to be carried off the field at first, and that it was going to be the end of my season," Harris said.
Harris II missed Thursday’s game and may need another day or two off, but it doesn’t sound like an IL stint is in the cards.
Tyler Glasnow (oblique), Tampa Bay Rays — Glasnow’s return now seems right around the corner, as the dynamic righty is set to make his first rehab start at Triple-A Durham today. He’s slated to throw around 60 pitches, which would seem to indicate that the team will have him make another start next week before he comes back to the Majors. His health will always be a question mark, but his stuff is among the most unhittable in baseball.
Nolan Gorman (back)/Jack Flaherty (hand), St. Louis Cardinals — Things went from bad to worse for St. Louis on Thursday. Not only did they suffer their sixth straight loss in ugly fashion to the Los Angeles Angels, but they saw two key pieces leave with potential injury. Flaherty — who took a comebacker off his hand and left with a trainer after just 2.1 innings — sounds like he’ll be okay:
#STLCards RHP Jack Flaherty on the come-backer off his left forearm:— John Denton (@JohnDenton555) May 4, 2023
“My hand’s fine. I didn’t get taken out because of my hand. I got taken out because I sucked.”
Gorman, though, is a bit iffier. The infielder has been one of the lone bright spots on this Cardinals offense so far, but he was pinch-hit for in the sixth inning with what was later revealed to be tightness in his lower back. The team didn’t have any sort of timetable, and Gorman should be considered day to day for now.
Vince Velasquez (elbow), Pittsburgh Pirates — A dream start to 2023 for Velasquez hit a scary speed bump on Thursday against the Tampa Bay Rays, when the righty — who had a 3.06 ERA over his first six starts — was forced to leave the game with what’s being called right elbow discomfort. Velasquez told reporters that he’s “optimistic”, calling it “just a little freak accident” and “nothing too severe,” but obviously the team will have to run some tests to figure out if anything is structurally wrong. Having already lost JT Brubaker to Tommy John surgery, Pittsburgh can hardly afford to lose another starter for an extended period of time — it could be top prospect Luis Ortiz who gets the call if Velasquez is out.
Jake Burger (oblique), Chicago White Sox — One of the lone bright spots in what’s shaping up to be a lost season for Chicago will be going on shelf, as Burger — who’d slugged .612 with seven homers in 23 games while filling in for the injured Yoan Moncada at third base — was put on the IL with the dreaded oblique strain. These are notoriously tricky injuries, so Burger will likely be out for at least a few weeks while Hanser Alberto figures to get much more playing time moving forward.
Ricky Tiedemann (elbow), Toronto Blue Jays — The recent rash of pitcher injuries has reached all the way to the Minors as Tiedemann — among the very brightest pitching prospects in all of baseball and a consensus top-50 prospect — exited his Double-A start with discomfort in his throwing elbow. The electric lefty, who’d struck out 20 in his first nine innings of 2023, threw a breaking ball and then immediately called for a trainer and began pointing at his arm:
No. 1 #BlueJays prospect Ricky Tiedemann left tonight's start with an apparent injury to his throwing arm: pic.twitter.com/TULRUFiXyw— Keegan Matheson (@KeeganMatheson) May 4, 2023
The team hasn’t issue any sort of timeframe for Tiedemann’s return, but it’s a big blow for a team that could maybe have used him down the stretch for a playoff push.
Joe Musgrove (foot), San Diego Padres — Musgrove will miss Friday’s marquee matchup with Clayton Kershaw and the Dodgers, as his start has been pushed back to Sunday after the righty developed a blister on his foot. There’s no real cause for concern here, though.
Orlando Arcia (wrist), Atlanta Braves — Arcia took a step toward returning to Atlanta, as the infielder took some dry swings of the bat for the first time since fracturing his wrist on a hit by pitch. Arcia is still likely a week or two away at least, but Vaughn Grissom hasn’t exactly covered himself in glory at the plate or in the field of late and the shortstop job remains wide open.
Austin Hays (finger), Baltimore Orioles — Hays has been battling a finger injury after being hit by a pitch on the hand a few days ago, and while he missed Thursday’s game against the Kansas City Royals, he’s been available off the bench and should come back at some point this weekend.
Kyle Isbel (hamstring), Kansas City Royals — Isbel hit his first homer of the season on Thursday, only to suffer a hamstring strain while running out an infield single a few innings later. The team hasn’t announced how severe the injury is, but assuming Isbel will miss at least a couple of weeks, Nate Eaton will likely get recalled from Triple-A. (Although the real winner here is likely Edward Olivaries, who’s swung the bat well this year and will see more regular playing time now.)
Trevor May (anxiety), Oakland Athletics — May has been working his way back from anxiety issues after a difficult start to the season, but it seems like that’s on hold for now:
Trevor May (15-day IL, anxiety-related issues) is “in a pause right now” after pitching in a Triple-A game Tuesday, Mark Kotsay said. “From a standpoint of going forward, I don’t have anything more for you.”— Matt Kawahara (@matthewkawahara) May 4, 2023
With Jeurys Familia and Domingo Acevedo getting DFA’d, this bullpen situation is even murkier than ever. Zach Jackson is likely the first man up for save opportunities right now until there’s some clarity on May’s status.
Reynaldo Lopez (biceps), Chicago White Sox — Lopez was back on the mound a few days after suffering biceps fatigue, but the results were hardly encouraging: The righty’s velocity was noticeably down, and he allowed a homer to Byron Buxton. Keynan Middleton nailed down a save on Wednesday and looks to be the new closing option until Liam Hendriks comes back.