George Springer suffered another injury in the second inning of Friday’s game, and the Blue Jays clearly didn’t learn from a similar situation that happened earlier in the year.
Teoscar Hernandez spent time on the Injured List back in April, and I can’t help but wonder if his absence could have been avoided, or at least shortened his time on the sidelines. I say that because back on April 13th, Hernandez took a swing against the Yankees and very clearly felt some sort of twinge in his oblique. I’m the furthest thing from a doctor, and it was clear as day to me as I watched it at the time.
To his limited credit with these situations, Charlie Montoyo came to the top of the dugout and asked Hernandez if he was okay. Instead of coming out to talk to him, and even making him take some dry swings, the skipper took Hernandez’s word that he was able to continue. One pitch later, Hernandez was wincing in pain, and was headed to the IL. It was clear there was an injury before that second swing, but my guess is he made it worse by staying in the game.
Why do I go back to this story? Because we saw a very similar situation play out with George Springer on Friday night, and Montoyo once again took his player’s word that he was okay. I’m not against a manager trusting his players, especially a veteran like Springer, but asking them to take themselves out of a game is something that most players won’t do until they absolutely have to.
The Blue Jays not only elected to leave Springer in the game after he limped around the outfield with the training staff, but they watched him labour as he jogged off the field, and still allowed him to take another at-bat in the third inning before he was finally replaced by Raimel Tapia.
As I already mentioned, I’m not a doctor, and I wasn’t sitting with or talking to Springer or the training staff. However, to me this seemed like an absolute no-brainer to get their star centre fielder out of the game before he made things worse. He was only able to play in 79 games in 2021, and so far Springer’s luck with his health has been much better. Unfortunately that ran out on Friday, and we’ll have to hope that it’s not a serious injury.
By the time Springer got to the plate in the top of the third, I couldn’t believe that they were still allowing him to continue. All it took was one arms-only swing to prove that it was a mistake, and the 3-time All-Star was out of the game.
Here’s hoping that the extra swing didn’t make things worse, but either way, Charlie Montoyo and the Blue Jays have to learn from this mistake, especially because it’s the second time it’s already happened in this young season.