UPDATE: The Orioles announced that Machado has a right knee sprain. That’s a vague diagnosis, but more on his status should be known after he’s reevaluated tomorrow.
8:47 a.m. ET: The high-profile injuries keep on coming, as Orioles third baseman Manny Machado was forced to exit tonight’s game against the Yankees in the bottom of the third inning with an apparent injury to his right knee.
Machado suffered the injury after broke his bat on a swing. His right knee buckled and he fell on his back in obvious pain. He needed help getting off the field and down the dugout steps. You can watch it here.
Machado tore the medial patellofemoral ligament in his left knee last September and underwent surgery one month later. He didn’t make his season debut until May 1 this year and got off to a slow start upon his return, but he had really taken off recently, hitting .345 with eight homers and 21 RBI over his last 35 games. Another serious knee injury would be quite a blow for the Orioles’ postseason hopes.
The Phillies and Red Sox appear intent on pursuing free agent first baseman Carlos Santana, MLB Network’s Jon Morosi reports. Santana rejected a one-year, $17.4 million qualifying offer from the Indians on Thursday and is expected to draw widespread interest on the market this winter. The Mets, Mariners, Angels and Indians could make a play for the infielder, though no serious offers have been made this early in the offseason.
Santana, 31, is coming off of a seven-year track with the Indians. He batted .259/.363/.455 with 23 home runs and 3.0 fWAR last season, making 2017 the fourth-most valuable year of his career to date. Although he was primarily stationed at first base over the last year, he could step back into a hybrid first base/DH role with the Red Sox, who are hurting for infield depth with Hanley Ramirez still working his way back from shoulder surgery.
As for Santana’s other suitors, the Mariners are far less likely to pursue a deal after trading for Ryon Healy last Wednesday. Neither the Mets nor the Phillies have a DH spot to offer the veteran infielder, and the Phillies’ Rhys Hoskins appears to be blocking the way at first base. Then again, Santana may not find a more enticing offer outside of Cleveland, where Edwin Encarnacion might otherwise be the club’s best option at first base. During the GM meetings, Indians’ GM Mike Chernoff said he “love to have both [Santana and Jay Bruce] back” in 2018, but hasn’t backed up that love with any contract talks just yet.