Just checking in with our friend Bob Timmermann’s MLB Death Watch:
Both the Philadelphia Phillies and the Arizona Diamondbacks can be mathematically eliminated from playoff contention if the St. Louis Cardinals beat the Washington Nationals at home on Friday night.
Alternatively, both teams can be eliminated if they lose their own games.
We don’t note all teams’ eliminations like this, but given the way our comments section skews around here, I figure this would be as good a place as any to set up Mourning Central for Phillies fans. HBT is your safe harbor at the end of this stormy season, Phillies Pholks. Come, cry on each others shoulders here. I shall bring you tissues and warm drinks to soothe your weary, heavy hearts.
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.