Some unfortunate news here for the Diamondbacks.
As relayed by Jack Magruder of FOX Sports Arizona, center fielder and primary leadoff man A.J. Pollock suffered a fractured fourth metacarpal on his right hand Saturday when he was struck by a pitch from Reds starter Johnny Cueto. He’ll be placed on the disabled list and may need surgery. D’Backs second baseman Aaron Hill missed eight weeks last year with a similar injury, for an idea on time frame.
Pollock, a dynamic 26-year-old, was batting .316/.366/.554 with six home runs and eight stolen bases in 52 games this season for the Snakes. He was the 17th overall pick in the 2009 MLB Amateur Draft.
Arizona enters play Sunday with a 14-game deficit in the National League West standings.
MLB.com has video of the pitch that broke Pollock’s hand on Saturday night.
UPDATE, 1:38 p.m. ET: Surgery is indeed necessary for Pollock …
CSN Philly’s Jim Salisbury reports that Phillies outfielder Nick Williams has been working out daily with free agent starter Jake Arrieta in Austin. The right-hander, who won the 2015 National League Cy Young Award, still remains teamless with spring training less than a month away. Williams has been trying to sell Arrieta on joining the Phillies.
Williams said of Arrieta, “He loves it here [Austin]. He has told me he likes working with young guys. I’m like, ‘All right, come on up.’ But I’m not writing the check. I don’t know what he wants. I don’t really dig into that because I’m not really in his position.”
On GM Matt Klentak’s hunt for pitching help, new manager Gabe Kapler said, “The pursuit is very real. I have a lot of trust that we’ll either go in [to spring training] with a new toy or we will pass on the opportunity because we’re better off giving this collection of pitchers a really healthy look because we thought that we could go acquire that piece a little bit later on this season or in the offseason next year.”
Arrieta, who turns 32 years old in March, went 14-10 with a 3.53 ERA and a 163/55 K/BB ratio in 168 1/3 innings last season with the Cubs. The Cubs, Cardinals, and Brewers have been linked to Arrieta this month.
Presently, the Phillies’ starting rotation figures to include Aaron Nola, Jerad Eickhoff, and Vince Velasquez along with some combination of Nick Pivetta, Ben Lively, Zach Eflin, Mark Leiter, and Jake Thompson. Arrieta would certainly amount to a big upgrade in the starting rotation and could make the Phillies a more attractive landing spot for Bryce Harper or Manny Machado, who become free agents after the 2018 campaign. The Phillies are expected to be in the mix for either or both players.