Originally published by DodgerBlue.com
Hours after Corey Seager gushed about being healthy now two years removed from Tommy John and hip surgeries, he was exited in the third inning of Friday’s series opener against the San Francisco Giants due to lower back discomfort.
Seager was replaced by Kiké Hernandez, who was inserted at second base, which slid Chris Taylor over to shortstop. There wasn’t any clear indication what may have caused the back trouble, though Seager did dive for a ball one inning prior. He also had been dealing with separate calf and quad issues over the past week.
Seager was moving to his left to back up Taylor on a chopper and immediately came up lame. He briefly spoke with a Los Angeles Dodgers trainer before walking off the field.
Seager entered play Friday night leading the league in hard-hit balls and batting .347/.396/.612 with four doubles, three home runs and seven RBI in 12 games. “I just feel good in general,” he said a few hours before first pitch.
“Whether it’s back to what you were or whatever, I feel really confident in my body and really good getting out there again, being able to do what I want to do. It’s a body-confidence thing, just feeling better, feeling stronger, being able to make moves I want to be able to make. It’s showing. Hopefully I can keep it going.”
Dodgers manager Dave Roberts has also highlighted Seager’s health as a key factor to his success this season. Roberts additionally credited him for being composed in at-bats.
“I just really believe the way that he’s running counts now, he’s letting pitchers make mistakes and he’s also hitting really good pitches,” Roberts said this week. “But I think the first couple years he really was always in ambush mode trying to get on the first pitch. N
“ow that he’s just staying in the strike zone more consistently, he’s got to be up there in the leaders of quality of contact this year. I think he’s still aggressive but I think just kind of understanding what the league is trying to do, whether it’s spin early or get him to chase early, where now he’s just being a lot more stubborn in the strike zone.
“So I know that the hitting guys have talked about mechanics, they’ve talked about approach with all of our guys. Corey to his credit is understanding the league even more and as a byproduct, running counts, and that to me is a credit to a lot of his early success.”
Mookie Betts returns
Like Seager, Mookie Betts had been limited by a minor injury — a sore middle finger on his left hand. Betts was limited to only playing the field during the series with the San Diego Padres, but was back in the lineup Friday.
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