That’s brutal luck for Ahmed, who was nearing a return from a long layoff owing to another HBP that resulted in a broken right hand. Another key middle infielder, Chris Owings, is also on the DL, though Piecoro notes that the hope is that he’ll be able to return at the tail end of the regular season.
In Ahmed’s case, he is expected to require six to eight weeks to recover. In theory, then, he could be ready to return during the postseason, should the Diamondbacks qualify and advance. But it’s likely that this injury will spell the end of Ahmed’s season.
The 27-year-old has only taken 178 plate appearances on the year to date, slashing .251/.298/.419 in advance of his first season of arbitration eligibility. He’s a gifted defender, though that won’t really boost his earning power through the arb process.
Arizona has relied upon youngster Ketel Marte to cover for the injuries. He carries a solid-enough .256/.342/.419 batting line and has taken strides in his plate discipline (11.4% walk rate). Marte figures to continue occupying a significant role the rest of the way.
There are still a few days left to try to swing a trade, of course. Reds shortstop Zack Cozart standing out as a hypothetical target, though his waiver status is unclear. GM Mike Hazen tells Piecoro that he’ll continue to look into the possibility of a swap for a middle infielder, but he also downplayed the likelihood of finding a match.