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Robinson Canó hustles, gets injured

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For years here, I have espoused what I like to call the “work smarter, not harder” philosophy. It comes up every time there’s a controversy over a player not hustling. Busting it out of the batter’s box on a ground ball is, I argue, not worth it 99 percent of the time. The risk of getting injured outweighs the small chance of reaching base. It is not one of my popular viewpoints.

Mets second baseman Robinson Canó is the latest lightning rod in the hustle controversy. The veteran twice failed to run hard on what became double plays. Manager Mickey Callaway benched him on Monday for the lack of effort. Upon his return yesterday against the Nationals, the crowd booed him during an 0-for-4 effort.

On Wednesday, Canó came to the plate with a runner on second base and two outs in the third inning against Max Scherzer. He grounded out to shortstop to end the inning. He ran hard, though and suffered an injury in the process. Laura Albanese of Newsday reports that he left with left quad tightness.

Work smarter, not harder.

Hunter Pence exits game with groin injury

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Rangers OF/DH Hunter Pence exited Sunday afternoon’s game against the Reds after suffering an apparent injury chasing down a ground-rule double hit by José Peraza in the fifth inning. The beat writers are suggesting it’s a groin injury, but we’ll have to wait for the Rangers to provide an update to know for sure.

Update:

Pence was 1-for-2 with a two-run home run on the afternoon before suffering the injury. He’s had a rebirth of a season, batting .294/.353/.608 with 15 home runs, 48 RBI, and 44 runs scored in 215 plate appearances.

Shin-Soo Choo and Pence were sharing both the DH spot and left field. If Pence needs to go on the injured list, Danny Santana would likely see an uptick in playing time, particularly in left field.