The Phillies got some good news Sunday on center fielder Shane Victorino, the morning after he made an early exit from Saturday’s game because of tightness in his left calf.
According to MLB.com’s Todd Zolecki, Victorino is aiming to return to the Phils’ starting lineup for Tuesday’s series-opening tilt against the Mets. The Phillies have an off day on Monday.
Michael Martinez will make his major league debut on Sunday afternoon against the Astros. The 28-year-old is leading off and playing center field.
“I still feel it in the certain area,” Victorino said Sunday. “My strength is there. We’re just trying to find out what’s causing that sensation. I’m not alarmed. None of us are alarmed.”
Victorino, 30, is 1-for-6 with two RBI so far this season. He was caught on his only stolen base attempt.
Phillies third baseman Will Middlebrooks suffered a serious injury during Saturday’s Grapefruit League contest against the Orioles. The infielder was chasing down a pop fly in the eighth inning when he ran into left fielder Andrew Pullin, who inadvertently trapped Middlebrooks’ ankle under his leg. Middlebrooks was unable to put weight on his leg following the collision and was carted off the field and taken to a local hospital for X-rays.
Per MLB.com’s Todd Zolecki, not much is known yet about the severity of the ankle injury or the recovery time it will require, though it appears serious enough to set Middlebrooks back considerably as he seeks a backup/bench role with the team this spring.
The 29-year-old is currently seeking another opportunity to extend his six-year major-league career in 2018. He’s coming off of two down years with the Brewers and Rangers, during which he slashed a cumulative .169/.229/.262 with four extra bases through 70 plate appearances.