BREAKING: Pete Alonso headed to the injured list with bone bruise and wrist sprain
The Mets will be without slugging first baseman Pete Alonso for an extended period after being hit by a pitch on Wednesday night.
And you thought this week couldn’t get any worse.
In the midst of their worst losing streak in four seasons, the Mets stretch has become all that more difficult as the news came down on Friday afternoon that star first baseman Pete Alonso would be heading to the injured list with a bone bruise and sprain of his left wrist. Infielder Luis Guillorme will be called up to take Alonso’s roster spot.
According to the club, a typical return to this injury would be 3-4 weeks.
Alonso was removed from the lineup in the top of the first inning on Wednesday night after getting drilled by a Charlie Morton fastball. Initially, it appeared as if the Polar Bear dodged a major bullet as he was diagnosed with a wrist contusion. Manager Buck Showalter even suggested that Alonso could potentially have been back in the lineup in time for tonight’s game against the Pirates.
That, of course, did not wind up being the case as the club sent Alonso back to New York for further imaging on Thursday. It was there that the Mets learned that the injury to the hand was more severe than they had originally believed, which has led to where we stand today.
There’s no good time to lose the best hitter in your lineup, but there genuinely could not have been a worse time for this to happen in the early portion of the regular season. The Mets have already been floundering of late, losers of six consecutive games and struggling to put any sort of consistent offensive or quality pitching performances together.
Now, they stand to be without the sport’s premiere slugger for an extended period of time. In his absence, the Mets and Showalter will likely now be forced to play Mark Vientos, who has mostly sat on the bench since being called up in May. Vientos, 23, has struggled in his brief big league career but has yet to ever see consistent playing time which is especially difficult for a kid just trying to get his feet wet in the big leagues.
For his struggles, it’s also important to note that Vientos has only actually appeared in 12 games so far this season for the Mets. And while he is sporting a .487 OPS during that time, it should be said that Francisco Álvarez had a very similar .494 OPS through his first 12 games this season and now looks to be a young superstar in the making. So, perhaps it will take some more time before we learn what Vientos really is at this level.
Aside from the youngster — because we know Buck loves his veterans — the only other active players with reasonable first base experience are Mark Canha, Eduardo Escobar and Daniel Vogelbach. Vogelbach is hitting just .091 since May 11th and hasn’t played in the field at all over the last two seasons, so he seems like the least likely alternative here. I wouldn’t be surprised if Escobar, who has performed much better since moving into a part-time role, acted as the occasional fill-in for Vientos at first base in Alonso’s absence.
No matter how you slice it, though, this is one of the most detrimental injuries that could have possibly taken place to this Mets roster, especially with where they currently sit in the National League standings. Somehow, some way they will have to find a way forward without their Polar Bear… a pretty tall task, indeed.