The Angels will place third baseman Yunel Escobar on the 10-day DL with a left hamstring strain, as per a team announcement. Escobar is expected to miss between 2-4 weeks of action with the Grade 1 strain, which is the least-serious type of such hamstring injuries.
Escobar has delivered a solid .272/.324/.411 slash line over 170 plate appearances for the Halos, buoyed by a strong first week of the season and a red-hot May. The veteran already has five homers this season, tying his total from all of last season. Escobar’s early power surge is reflected in his .139 Isolated Slugging mark, which would be the highest of his 11-year career (his previous single-season high of .136 came in 2009, when he hit a career-best 14 home runs for the Braves).
The loss of such a productive bat is a significant blow to the Angels, who already rank in the bottom-third of most major offensive categories. Mike Trout is having another incredible season and Luis Valbuena has hit well since returning from the DL, though the Halos have gotten little from regulars like Albert Pujols, Kole Calhoun, Cameron Maybin and Danny Espinosa. Despite this lack of offense and an injury-ravaged rotation, however, the Angels are staying afloat with a 19-21 record, good enough to keep pace in the tightly-packed American League.
A corresponding move will be made once Los Angeles officially puts Escobar on the DL, though it seems like the Angels will simply keep Jefry Marte on the active roster, according to Pedro Moura of the L.A. Times. Marte had just been optioned to Triple-A earlier today, though if he’s sticking around in Anaheim, he and backup infielder Cliff Pennington are the logical candidates to handle third base while Escobar is sidelined.