UPDATE: Bill Shaikin of the Los Angeles Times passes along word that Freese exited with right calf tightness. He’s considered day-to-day.
9:44 p.m. ET: Troubling development for the Cardinals, as third baseman David Freese was forced to exit Game 3 of the NLCS tonight with an apparent injury.
Freese was visited by Cardinals manager Mike Matheny and a team trainer after he singled against Dodgers left-hander Hyun-Jin Ryu to lead off the top of the fifth inning. He remained in the game initially and advanced to second base on a single by Matt Adams, but was then replaced by pinch-runner Daniel Descalso. Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch speculates that it could be a hamstring/leg issue.
Freese is 5-for-26 (.192) with one home run, one double, and four RBI so far during the postseason.
Mets second baseman Robinson Canó is not in the lineup for Monday’s series opener against the division rival Nationals. Per MLB.com’s Anthony DiComo, it’s punishment for failing to run hard on a pair of double plays over the weekend against the Marlins.
Manager Mickey Callaway said, “He understands that it’s unacceptable to not run balls out. He understands that he needs to do that at all times.”
Canó first gaffe came in the top of the seventh inning on Friday, with his team trailing 7-3. Facing Adam Conley, Canó hit a grounder back to the pitcher, who turned a 1-6-3 double play. Canó was only halfway up the first base line when the throw got to first base.
In the fourth inning on Sunday, with the game still scoreless, Canó tapped a Sandy Alcantara pitch in the dirt. Thinking it was foul, Canó didn’t run, but catcher Chad Wallach charged and grabbed the ball while it was still in fair territory. He threw to second base for the force out and then the ball was easily whipped to first base to complete the double play as Canó still thought it was foul.
This likely wouldn’t be as big a deal as it currently is if Canó were actually producing at the plate and if the Mets weren’t in a freefall. Canó has a .245/.293/.374 batting line on the season. Meanwhile, the Mets are 20-25 and riding a five-game losing streak which includes having been shut out in each of their last two games.