Bad news for one of the most productive rookies in the National League.
Lucas Duda crashed into the right field wall while trying to track down a fly ball hit by Albert Pujols during Wednesday’s game. While it looked like a fairly innocuous play at the time, the rookie outfielder left the game with dizziness and is now suffering from headaches.
The Mets have yet to rule out a concussion and manager Terry Collins told Adam Rubin of ESPN New York this morning that Duda may not play in the final six games of the season.
Duda, 25, is batting .292/.370/.482 with 10 homers, 50 RBI and an .852 OPS over 347 plate appearances this season. He ranks 10th in the National League (among players with at least 200 plate appearances) with a .957 OPS since the All-Star break.
Collins told Rubin last night that he envisions Duda as the starting right fielder for the club in 2012. He also mentioned the possibility of flipping Jason Bay to right field and moving Duda to left.
The Giants are finalizing a minor league deal for free agent outfielder Cameron Maybin, according to Andrew Baggarly and Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic. The team has not confirmed the signing, but it’s in keeping with their stated goal of adding more veteran presence and outfield options to their roster in advance of the 2019 season.
Maybin, 31, appeared in back-to-back gigs with the Marlins and Mariners in 2018. He slashed an underwhelming .249/.326/.336 with four home runs, 10 stolen bases (in 15 chances), a .662 OPS, and 0.5 fWAR through 384 plate appearances for the two clubs, a clear improvement over his totals in 2017 but still shy of the career numbers he posted with the Padres all the way back in 2011. It’s not only his offense that has tanked, but his speed and defense in center field, all of which he’ll try to improve as he jockeys for a roster spot in camp this month.
The Giants’ outfield has been largely depleted of any kind of consistent talent lately, especially taking into account the recent departures of Hunter Pence, Gregor Blanco, and Gorkys Hernández. Even with the acquisition of, say, All-Star right fielder Bryce Harper, there’s nothing standing in the way of Maybin and fellow veteran signee Gerardo Parra grabbing hold of full- or part-time roles this year, though they’ll need to outperform candidates like Chris Shaw, Steven Duggar, Drew Ferguson, Mac Williamson, Austin Slater, Craig Gentry, Mike Gerber, and others first.
In a previous report on Friday, Baggarly revealed that a “handshake understanding” had been established with several veteran players already this offseason, all but guaranteeing them regular starting opportunities over the course of the season. How those agreements will be affected by spring training performances remains to be seen, but at least for now, the Giants appear prepared to give their newest players a long leash as they try to get back on top in the NL West.