Reds reliever Amir Garrett was forced to make an early exit from Friday’s game against the Phillies after sustaining a mild Achilles strain. In the fifth inning, the lefty sprinted towards first base to tag Odubel Herrera, but stepped awkwardly on the base and crumpled to the ground. While he immediately got to his feet again, he limped back toward the mound and was attended to by a team trainer before leaving the field.
The good news: the injury appears to be mild, and Garrett is considered day-to-day for the time being. Precautionary X-rays returned negative, so it’s likely that he’ll be cleared to return to the mound over the next few days, assuming there are no further complications. Taking Friday’s abbreviated outing into account, the 26-year-old left-hander is working with a 3.73 ERA, 3.0 BB/9 and 10.5 SO/9 through 50 2/3 innings in 2018.
Following the incident, right-hander David Hernandez replaced Garrett on the mound and polished off the fifth inning with a pop out in foul territory. The Reds currently lead the Phillies 6-3 in the top of the ninth.
With just over a week left in the regular season, the Diamondbacks have elected to shut down infielder/outfielder Ketel Marte. Marte has been dealing with some lower back inflammation and stiffness over the last few days; on Friday, the team revealed that he was diagnosed with a stress reaction as well.
It doesn’t look as though the injury will compromise Marte’s 2020 campaign, but as Craig noted on Wednesday, his absence will likely have some effect on his NL MVP candidacy. The 25-year-old will wrap his first All-Star season with a .329/.389/.592 batting line, 32 home runs, a .981 OPS, and a staggering, career-best 7.1 fWAR through 628 plate appearances.
Marte told reporters Thursday that the back pain had been an issue “for the past two months,” though he didn’t comment on the severity of the injury. Despite his ability to play through the pain since July, the issue has clearly escalated in the last week or so. Although the loss of their most valuable contributor may have a negative impact on the D-backs’ chances of competing in the postseason, it’s undeniably a wise move to let Marte recuperate rather than pushing him to play for another week and running the risk of further injury.
Entering Friday’s series against the Padres — their last road series of the regular season — Arizona still has a sizable gap to close in order to earn one of two NL wild card spots. They’re five games out of postseason contention, with the Nationals, Brewers, Cubs, Mets, and Phillies ahead of them.