Dodgers’ All-Star shortstop Corey Seager will not be joining the team for the NLCS, according to an announcement made on Saturday. Seager appeared in all three games of the NLDS last week, but tweaked his back in Game 3 and was unable to work back from the injury in time for the next playoff round.
The 23-year-old infielder sustained the injury after sliding into second base in the first inning of Game 3. He wasn’t immediately removed from the game, however, and helped polish off the Division Series sweep with a .273/.467/.455 batting line and two RBI in 15 PA. Following the series, he was diagnosed with back soreness and was unable to participate in team workouts leading up to the NLCS. While he’s still listed as day-to-day, he hasn’t made enough progress to resume his post in the lineup for the next leg of the playoffs.
It’s a tough blow for Los Angeles, who could have used the extra pop in their lineup against the heavy-hitting Cubs. Without Seager, they’ll lean on 28-year-old middle infielder Charlie Culberson, who went 2-for-15 with two hits and two walks during the 2017 season. This will be his first postseason appearance since 2016, when he went 0-for-7 with a pair of strikeouts in four NLDS games against the Nationals. The Dodgers could also turn to some combination of Chris Taylor, Enrique Hernandez and Logan Forsythe at shortstop, though the exact configuration has yet to be determined.