Max Muncy arrived at Chase Field on Thursday uncertain of his immediate baseball future. His right wrist, the victim of a 94-mph fastball Wednesday in San Diego, was wrapped in a black brace. A fluoroscopy Wednesday did not show any structural damage, but those scans are not as thorough as X-rays and Petco Park doesn’t house X-ray equipment, so the Dodgers slugger had to wait a day for the more comprehensive exam. He admitted the anticipation was unsettling.
“I’m not trying to get my hope up that ‘Oh, the pictures came out negative, it’s all good,’” Muncy said. “Then we get on that and it turns out something’s wrong. So just trying to stay neutral with it right now. But we’ll see how it goes.”
Muncy will have to spend another night wondering.
X-rays conducted on his wrist Thursday at Chase Field were negative, but Muncy said his diagnosis is not final. He will undergo further tests Friday to determine whether there are any fractures. For now, Muncy and the Dodgers said the diagnosis remains a contusion.
“We had an X-ray today,” Muncy said. “That came back good as far as I know. From everything I saw, it looked good. So we’ll get some more testing tomorrow and we’ll go from there.”
Whatever the diagnosis is, Muncy is expected to not play at least until early next week. The infielder said there was pain, swelling and a limited range of motion in the wrist. He explained the pitch hit him right around the same spot that Chris Taylor got hit by a pitch in mid-July. Taylor, too, underwent a fluoroscopy that night that did not display any significant damage but an X-ray revealed a fracture. Taylor missed nearly five weeks. An injury of that sort could keep Muncy out until — and perhaps into — the postseason. If the news is bad, Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said the club will be “a little more aggressive” with their September call-ups. Asked if that meant the Dodgers would bring up top prospect Gavin Lux, an infielder, to play this season, Roberts did not elaborate. Rosters expand Sunday.
“I don’t really know who but obviously you got to replace him,” Roberts said.
Though the 21-year-old Lux is a promising talent, replacing Muncy would be a tall task. Muncy, an All-Star for the first time this season, ranks second on the Dodgers with 33 home runs, 87 RBIs and an .899 on-base-plus-slugging percentage. His 4.2 FanGraphs WAR is third on the club and tied for 23rd in the majors.
“Number one, you just feel bad,” Roberts said. “He’s having a really good year.”
Stripling set to return
Ross Stripling said the plan is to come off the injured list Sunday when rosters expand. The right-hander threw three pain-free innings in a simulated game Tuesday at the Dodgers’ spring training in Arizona.
Stripling has been on the injured list since July 25 with neck stiffness.
Julio Urias made his first appearance in a game Thursday since Major League Baseball gave him a 20-game suspension for his arrest on suspicion of domestic battery in May. Urias started for Class-A Rancho Cucamonga. He is eligible to return to the Dodgers on Monday after serving the final 15 games of his 20-game ban... Justin Turner hadn’t heard from MLB regarding his appeal of a one-game suspension before taking the field Thursday. Turner was suspended and appealed Tuesday.