The Phillies were set to add both Jean Segura and Bryce Harper to their lineup for the start of a three-game weekend series against the Atlanta Braves on May 7. Segura was coming off a right quad injury while Harper dealt with a wrist injury.
In his pregame meeting before that game, Joe Girardi said that the team missed Segura more than Harper. It was a surprising statement considering what Harper’s bat means to the lineup, but Segura has meant that much more to the Phillies this season.
Fast forward almost six weeks later and the Phillies have lost both Segura and Harper to injury once again. Harper, who left Tuesday night’s game against the Dodgers with lower back tightness, is day-to-day. Segura left the game in the ninth inning with a left groin injury after he hustled down the first-base line following a fielding error from Albert Pujols. Girardi is sure Segura will miss Wednesday’s game. He’s definitely not day-to-day.
“I don’t want to say pretty bad,” Girardi said about Segura’s injury following Tuesday’s game. “My guess is he’s not a player for us tomorrow until we have the doctor examine him. Jean’s a tough kid. He doesn’t come out too often.”
Girardi does believe that Harper could be available to play in Friday’s game against the San Francisco Giants. Segura’s injury is the bigger concern.
The Phillies second baseman has been the team’s best hitter this season. He ranks fifth in the league in batting average and has the highest FanGraphs WAR total among all hitters with less than 205 plate appearances. His .379 on-base percentage ranks fourth among all second baseman. Along with Odúbel Herrera in the leadoff spot, Segura has solidified the top of the Phillies order and has turned himself into an All-Star candidate in the process. Not to mention, Segura is among the Phillies’ top defenders this season as measured by Statcast’s outs above average.
All of that could change if Segura is out for an extended period of time. Perhaps it could mark the end of the Phillies’ chances of making a respectable run at a playoff spot.
The Phillies are currently five games behind the New York Mets for first place in the NL East. With Jacob deGrom scheduled to take the mound Wednesday night in Queens, it’s safe to pencil in a win for the Mets. A loss against the Dodgers could spell disaster for the Phils, who left for Los Angeles on Sunday only three games back of first place in the division.
The Phillies will know much more about the severity of Segura’s injury on Wednesday. If Segura goes on the injured list, Nick Maton could get the call-up from Triple-A. Didi Gregorius will most likely not return during the team’s west coast roadtrip. According to the contingent of Phillies beat writers in Los Angeles, Gregorius was diagnosed with pseudogout. In layman’s terms, it’s a rare form of arthritis where calcium crystals form in the joints.
General manager Sam Fuld told reporters, including the Philadelphia Inquirer’s Matt Breen, that the team now has some more clarity on why the swelling in Gregorius’ elbow continued to linger. They have a treatment plan for him and hope to get him back in the Lehigh Valley lineup at some point this week. He’s been on the injured list since May 18 with a right elbow injury.
Without Gregorius, Harper and Segura, the Phillies lineup will be short three regulars during a crucial stretch of games.
“We’re going to need some guys to step up tomorrow,” Girardi said.
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