Yordan Alvarez was a late scratch from today’s Astros lineup, as the young slugger continues to battle knee issues. Manager Dusty Baker told the Houston Chronicle’s Chandler Rome and other reporters that Alvarez arrived at the ballpark feeling knee soreness, which Baker suspected was from an awkward slide into third base during Saturday’s game. Alvarez has been dealing with bad knees throughout his young career, and he has already been limited to DH duty for this season.
Since past tests haven’t revealed any structural problems, it could be that Alvarez’s knees could simply limit him going forward, perhaps both in 2020 and beyond. It certainly isn’t what you want to see from a 23-year-old player, especially one who has been so productive even amidst this knee pain, and Baker acknowledged that the team will keep a close eye on managing Alvarez for the rest of the season.
More on some of the many injury situations popping up on a daily basis around baseball…
- Tommy Pham was removed during a ninth-inning at-bat during today’s Padres/Diamondbacks game. Pham was seemingly favoring his hand after hitting a foul ball, and left after a consultation with a team trainer. This is the second straight game Pham has left early, as he was removed during the second inning of Saturday’s contest due to cramping in both calves. However, he was back in today’s starting lineup as the DH and didn’t seem any worse for wear, going 1-for-4 with a walk and a stolen base. [UPDATE: the Padres are worried Pham has a broken hamate bone, Kevin Acee of the San Diego Union-Tribune reports.]
- Franmil Reyes hit two home runs during the Indians’ 8-5 victory over the Tigers today, though Reyes’ big day had a painful ending after he was hit in the left hand by a pitch during a ninth-inning plate appearance. Reyes was removed from the game, though he was diagnosed with only a contusion after x-rays were negative. It seems likely Reyes will miss a game or two, though an injured list placement doesn’t seem likely at this point. Reyes has been one of the few highlights for a struggling Cleveland lineup, as Reyes has hit .316/.366/.553 with five home runs.
- Aaron Judge’s 10-day IL stint may be a minimal one, as the Yankees star told Newsday’s Roger Rubin and other media that he is already recovered from his minor calf strain just two days after his placement. “I was begging for just a couple days…and I don’t need 10 days to be feeling good. I already feel 100 percent now,” Judge said. While Judge is “frustrated with myself not being out there,” he “wouldn’t say I’m frustrated with the organization. This shows how much the organization cares for me and looks out for my well-being.” Given how much time Judge (and other Yankees players) have missed due to injury in recent years, it makes sense that the club would be as cautious as possible in making sure a seemingly minor injury didn’t blossom into a bigger issue.