Kendrys Morales left the game Monday night against the Baltimore Orioles with a grade 1 hamstring strain. Given that DL stints are now 10 days and that Morales is the DH, it seems likely he may end up being DL’d. We’ll know more tomorrow, but a DL stint may not be such a bad thing for the Toronto Blue Jays.
Kendrys Morales got off to a slow start and a lot could be attributed to him needing to take a seat on the bench when Josh Donaldson DH’d with his dead shoulder issue. Morales is currently hitting (stats from Fangraphs not including Monday night) .190/.250/.333 with one home run and six RBI in only 24 plate appearances.
Morales potentially hitting the disabled list would open up a roster spot for someone to be called up, and that call up would 99.9% be Teoscar Hernandez, who raked in the spring. If this is the case, Hernandez would likely become the everyday left fielder for the Blue Jays. That would push the left field platoon of Curtis Granderson and Steve Pearce to DH.
Granderson is currently hitting .364/.417/.545 with no home runs and two RBI. Steve Pearce is red hot hitting .235/.316/.647 with two home runs and three RBI. Those stats don’t count Pearce’s 3rd home run and 5th RBI after his homer Monday night against the Baltimore Orioles.
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Having Teoscar Hernandez up as the left fielder will help improve the outfield defense and bring a bat who was hot for almost the entirety of the spring. The left field platoon will continue but the defense will be taken out of the equation entirely, which isn’t a bad thing given Pearce’s outfield defense.
It remains to be seen what exactly will happen with Kendrys Morales, but the flexibility of a DL stint for 10 or more days will be a welcome addition to John Gibbons‘ arsenal to keep guys who are hot in the lineup. It will also allow for a few more DH stints for the short term, for Josh Donaldson, Justin Smoak, and others.
If Kendrys Morales hits the DL, it may be a blessing in disguise for the next little while and could definitely be an improvement on the current roster construction 11 days into the regular season for the Toronto Blue Jays.