The Los Angeles Dodgers twice have received positive news on Max Muncy since he was hit by a pitch in his right wrist, but the club is still awaiting a final determination on the severity of the injury.
Muncy took a 94 mph fastball flush off his bone and was immediately removed from Wednesday’s game against the San Diego Padres. He was diagnosed with a right wrist contusion and underwent a fluoroscopy exam at Petco Park, which came back negative.
Muncy was still experiencing pain and limited range of motion the following day, which prompted an X-ray and meeting with a hand specialist. That imaging also came back negative, but the 29-year-old is next expected to undergo an MRI.
With some uncertainty surrounding Muncy’s status moving forward, Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said the club may adjust their initial strategy for call-ups once active rosters expand in September, according to Jorge Castillo of the L.A. Times:
“If the news is bad, Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said the club will be “a little more aggressive” with their September call-ups.
Roberts previously outlined the Dodgers’ plan to welcome back a select number of players on Sunday, then incorporate more in the week or two after. If it does come to Muncy facing a lengthy recovery for a fracture or similar injury, it could most impact Gavin Lux.
Roberts confirmed this week the organization’s top prospect is all but guaranteed to join the Dodgers at some point during the final month of the regular season. However, it has not yet been determined if Lux will be placed on the active roster or simply fill an apprenticeship role like Will Smith did last year.
Although Muncy has a leg up on Chris Taylor by virtue of his X-ray coming back negative, his situation is eerily similar. Taylor had a fluoroscopy at Fenway Park upon being hit by a pitch and exiting early, which did not reveal a fracture.
A follow-up exam the next day showed the non-displaced fracture in his left forearm. Taylor wound up missing five weeks. Applying that to Muncy would rule him out for the remainder of the regular season and potentially the National League Division Series as well.
Once the Dodgers clinch their seventh consecutive division title — their magic number to do so is down to nine — they will be slated to begin the postseason Oct. 3 with Game 1 of the NLDS.