Mariners 3B Kyle Seager (hand) set for surgery, will miss April
PEORIA, Ariz. – As is typically the case, the longer it takes to get the news, the worse the news is. That’s certainly true with Mariners third baseman Kyle Seager’s hand injury.
Three days after awkwardly rolling over his glove in a spring game against the Cubs, manager Scott Servais delivered the prognosis on Monday afternoon.
“Kyle’s going to need surgery,” Servais told the media gathered in his office. “He’s going to have the surgery done tomorrow here with a hand specialist in Arizona. I don’t have an exact timetable of when to expect him back to play, we will find out more when he gets done with the surgery tomorrow. I know he will be out the month of April, after that I don’t know.”
An MRI revealed torn tendons in the knuckle areas between Seager’s index and middle finger on his left hand, which was splinted and wrapped when he spoke to the media shortly after Servais.
“It definitely sucks,” said Seager, who will be placed on the injured list for the first time in his career when the season begins. “It will be the first time for me to have to go on the (IL) – that is something I was proud of. It sucks any time you don’t get to go out there with your teammates, your friends, it’s hard.”
Perhaps even harder after the work Seager put in this past offseason. Seager reported to camp having transformed his body during a winter devoted to a new workout routine and diet. Rehab will be unfamiliar territory for Seager, who has averaged 157 games per year since his first full season with the Mariners in 2012, but he was not hanging his head when asked about what is next.
“This is our job,” he said. “This is part of it, unfortunately. It is what it is. I did have a successful winter, and that doesn’t necessarily take away from that there are still things I can continue to work on while I am doing this. It is what it is, it sucks, it’s not something I really wanted to happen, but we will deal with it and rehab and get through it.”
Noted hand specialist Dr. Donald Sheridan, who is a team physician for the Arizona Diamondbacks, will perform the surgery.
While Seager is out, Ryon Healy will get most of the work at third base, while the winner of the Mariners’ utility position battle will figure into the picture as well. Healy, the Mariners’ starting first baseman in 2018, came up in the Athletics’ system as a third baseman, a position he played exclusively in 72 games as a rookie with Oakland in 2016. He split time between first and third in 2017.
It will certainly be a change of pace for Servais to not have his everyday third baseman available.
“Kind of the thing you take for granted, writing a guy’s name in the lineup every day, but life goes on, baseball goes on,” Servais said. “The league is not going to stop and wait for Kyle Seager to get healthy so we keep playing. We have got to try to figure it out, get somebody else in there, and it may create an opportunity for someone else to really step up and take it and run with it. But it is disheartening.
“It’s tough when you figure he is our everyday guy, fire him in there 140, 150 games, and he won’t (play) quite as many this year.”