Dodgers shortstop Corey Seager has a mild strain of right hamstring
An MRI exam revealed that Dodgers shortstop Corey Seager suffered a mild strain of his right hamstring Friday night, an injury that will prevent him from starting for several games but might not be severe enough to send him to the 10-day disabled list.
Manager Dave Roberts said the Seager was available to pinch-hit Saturday night “if the opportunity presents itself to tie or win the game.”
The Dodgers will monitor Seager for several days and decide by Tuesday or Wednesday whether to put him on the DL. Utility man Enrique Hernandez started at shortstop Saturday.
The Dodgers have absorbed injuries to several position players, including first baseman Adrian Gonzalez, center fielder Joc Pederson, second baseman Logan Forsythe and left fielder Andrew Toles, but the loss of Seager for an extended period would be a significant blow.
The left-handed-hitting Seager, who bats second, was a unanimous choice for National League rookie of the year last season, hitting .308 with an .877 on-base-plus-slugging percentage, 26 homers, 40 doubles, 72 RBIs and 105 runs.
He’s batting .298 with a .909 OPS, 12 homers, 19 doubles, 39 RBIs and a team-leading 56 runs. He hit three homers and drove in six runs in the Dodgers’ win over the New York Mets on Tuesday.
“It would be a huge void,” Roberts said. “When you’re playing a premium defensive position, and you lose your shortstop and arguably your best hitter, it’s a big blow.”
Seager had singles to right field in each of his first two at-bats Friday but felt the hamstring give a little on his initial step out of the box on his second hit, a run-scoring single. He took second on the throw home and the hamstring cramped as he pulled into the bag.
Having suffered two right hamstring strains and a left hamstring tear in the minor leagues, “I know when it’s really bad,” Seager said, “and this wasn’t.”
Kenta Maeda, who struggled for two months and lost his grip on a rotation spot in early June, will start Tuesday night against the Angels.
Roberts said he will give the other five starters extra rest by pushing them back a day. Rich Hill will start Monday against the Angels, and left-handers Hyun-Jin Ryu and Alex Wood will start Wednesday and Thursday in Angel Stadium.
Maeda has given up two earned runs and six hits, striking out 12 batters and waking one, in 10 innings of his last three appearances, a start and two relief outings.
“He’s thrown the baseball really well,” Roberts said. “I want to keep guys current, relevant, and on other side, giving the other guys an extra day makes sense.”
Get Ziggy with it
Roberts hosted a special guest Saturday — Ziggy Lazaro, an 11-year-old from Los Angeles who was born with spinal muscular atrophy and has been confined to a wheelchair since he was 2.
Ziggy, a Dodgers fan “since I was a 2-year-old with a Dodgers shirt,” was named co-manager for the day as part of ESPN’s Make-A-Wish program. He listed Clayton Kershaw, Saturday’s starter, as his favorite player.
He toured the field, clubhouse, weight room, coaches’ room, food room and manager’s office before the game, meeting numerous players along the way. He sat next to the Dodgers dugout during the game.
“He’s a special young man,” Roberts said, “and he made a lot of people happy today.”
Follow Mike DiGiovanna on Twitter @MikeDiGiovanna
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