Seattle Mariners closer Andrés Muñoz exits game after collision at home plate

Jun 4, 2024, 10:16 PM | Updated: 10:43 pm

Seattle Mariners closer Andrés Muñoz...

Andrés Muñoz of the Seattle Mariners is taken out of a 2024 game. (Brandon Vallance/Getty Images)

(Brandon Vallance/Getty Images)

The Seattle Mariners’ banged-up bullpen may have received another blow during Tuesday night’s 4-3 victory against the Oakland Athletics at Oakland Coliseum.

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Closer Andrés Muñoz exited the game with two outs in the bottom of the ninth inning after a collision at home plate with A’s shortstop Max Schuemann. Muñoz collided with Schuemann’s backside while sliding down to attempt a tag at home plate after a wild pitch. You can see the play in the video below.

Muñoz attempted one warmup pitch on the mound with manager Scott Servais and head trainer Kyle Torgerson on the field, shook his head and exited the field on his own strength. He later went back to the trainer’s room without help.

Servais revealed after the game that his closer has been dealing with a lower-back issue and the collision caused it to flare up. He said Muñoz will undergo an MRI.

The play allowed Oakland to pull within 4-3 and put a runner on second base, but left-hander Tayler Saucedo induced a groundout from Brent Rooker to seal Seattle’s fourth straight victory.

The run was the first allowed by Muñoz since May 18 and just the second since April 21, snapping a string of six straight scoreless outings.

The hard-throwing right-hander has been lights out in the back of Seattle’s bullpen this season. In 25 appearances, Muñoz has converted 12 of 13 save opportunities with a 1.73 ERA and 36 strikeouts over 26 innings.

The Mariners are already without bullpen arms Matt Brash, Gregory Santos and Gabe Speier. The dependable Brash is out for the season after undergoing Tommy John surgery. Santos, an offseason addition, is still working his way back from injury and hasn’t pitched this season. The left-handed Speier was put on the 15-day injured list over the weekend with a left rotator cuff strain.

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