The Mariners lost against the White Sox last night bringing the team’s record to 2-3 on the season. Despite losing the series, it isn’t the worst part of yesterday’s game. Mariners starting pitcher James Paxton was pulled from the second inning due to discomfort in his elbow, and Jake Fraley was taken out of the game after the fifth inning due to a hamstring strain.
We are living in a Mariners nightmare
One of the biggest questions going into the 2021 season was how long would James Paxton be on the field? His long history of injuries has impacted his career on multiple occasions, notably last season. In 2020, he suffered a forearm strain and luckily it seems like it’s not the same injury from last year
Ryan Divish reported that James Paxton didn’t feel the same degree of pain as his injury from 2020, so he hopes it’s just discomfort and nothing more. The Big Maple is going to get an MRI sometime today.
Paxton was one of my candidates to break out this season and even make his first All-Star appearance, after having an electric Spring Training. I am hoping that he won’t miss too much time on the injured list because without Paxton, the Mariners might be a completely different team.
Jake Fraley was having a good start to 2021 due to his patience at the plate and is competing for the starting left field position. Now, it seems like left-field is Taylor Trammell’s to lose once Kyle Lewis returns. Jake made a fantastic diving catch to rob Yoan Moncada of a hit to end the fifth inning but got up with some pain. The LSU product has also had a history of injuries so his hamstring injury is very concerning.
These two injuries on top of Kyle Lewis’ is not the start Mariners fans were expecting. The Mariners just recalled Braden Bishop and Ljay Newsome to fill the void. Bishop will obviously add outfield depth and give Scott Servais some flexibility. Ljay Newsome had a nice Spring Training and will go straight into the bullpen for now, according to Shannon Drayer. That means Nick Margevicius will fill in for Paxton but I could imagine Newsome switching with Margevicius if the lefty struggles.
Let’s hope Paxton and Fraley aren’t on the IL for too long.