Rockies outfielder David Dahl says he won’t continue pressing to return late this year, as Patrick Saunders of the Denver Post reports on Twitter. That’s not terribly surprising with just two weeks left in a lost season.
Dahl had been working steadily back from a high ankle sprain — the latest in a string of injuries that have limited the talented performer to this point of his career. Fortunately, he says that he is making good progress. And this appears to be a one-off injury, entirely unrelated to the core-muscle maladies that had plagued him previously.
This will still end up being Dahl’s most voluminous MLB campaign to date. He appeared in an even 100 games — meaning he spent sufficient time on the active roster to be eligible for Super Two status. Dahl is certain to have sufficient service time, though his lost time will certainly limit his earnings.
Dahl won’t reach his 26th birthday until next April Fools’ Day, so he’s still plenty youthful. And he’ll be under arbitration control through 2023, meaning the Rox have ample time left to accrue value.
While he doesn’t draw many walks, Dahl hits for a high average with good power. He’s a lifetime .297/.346/.521 hitter in the majors — though that translates to a good-but-not-superlative 110 wRC+ once accounted for context. Defensive metrics haven’t been particularly fond of Dahl’s glovework, though they’re especially hard to trust at Coors Field.
UZR was actually fond of Dahl’s performance in a 300+ inning sample this year in center field. It seems the Rockies agree with that assessment. Skipper Bud Black says that Dahl will play up the middle when he returns next year, as Nick Groke of The Athletic covers on Twitter.