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Injury Report: Marlins bit by the injury bug

After starting the 2016 season healthy, several key Marlins have suffered injuries.

MLB: Miami Marlins at Tampa Bay Rays Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

After a relatively healthy beginning to the regular season, the Miami Marlins have been bit by the injury bug. While some of the injuries suffered over the past two weeks have been minor, others seem to be more serious and possibly chronic. I have been away on vacation, but am back to continue writing weekly injury reports. There is a lot to cover, so let's get started.

Below you will find updates on the Marlins' injury-related transactions and specific players' injury situations.

DL Transactions

  • Carter Capps - 60-day DL
  • Nefi Ogando - 15-day DL (May 9th)
  • Bryan Morris - 15-day DL (May 25th)

Edwin Jackson was activated from the DL on May 20th, Mike Dunn was reinstated on May 31st.

Giancarlo Stanton

Stanton has been out of the lineup since May 24th with right side soreness. In an interview, Mattingly claimed that Stanton had been suffering from a similar injury during spring training:

There was a little bit of this going on in spring training at different times, so at this point I'm not really that concerned.

While Mattingly is not worried, it is slightly concerning to see Stanton struggling with an injury he had in the past. Is this injury chronic? At first, Mattingly was optimistic and implied Stanton would only be out a day or two:

Hopefully it's not something major, it's a day or two. I think that's what it was in the spring, but we'll find out.

Clearly Stanton is hurting, as he has been absent longer than Mattingly originally expected. This will definitely be something to keep an eye on. As I have said in prior articles, recurrent lingering injuries are a concern. The wear and tear of a full MLB schedule often turns minor injuries into major ones. It is important that Stanton is carefully monitored by the training staff to prevent further aggravation of his right side soreness.

Bryan Morris

Morris is likely out for the season as he opted to receive back surgery for his herniated disk. He met with the team physician yesterday and decided that surgery was his best option for recovery.

Morris' struggled this season, and fish stripers doubted him every step of the way:

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One reason for Morris' struggles was a decrease in his pitching velocity, something Shimmy_812 pointed out on the April 7th game thread vs. the Nationals.

I was actually working on an article analyzing Morris' velocity drop and wondered if he was pitching through injury. Take a look at the velocity charts for his sinker and fastball over the past three years:

Fastball:

Fangraphs

Sinker:

Fangraphs

What do you notice? Morris' velocity has dropped significantly twice in his career. Once in 2015 when he returned from the 15-day DL after suffering a lower back strain, and now at the beginning of 2016 prior to being diagnosed with a herniated disk in his lower back. Coincidence? It is possible that Morris had been experiencing back pain all season and tried to pitch through it. He will have to hope his lower back issues resolve if he wants to continue pitching in the MLB next season.

Derek Dietrich

Michael wrote an excellent article analyzing Dietrich's freak head injury. I won't add any more here.

Christian Yelich

Yelich was out six games with back spasms, but returned to action on May 27th. Yelich has suffered from back issues before. He sat out during spring training due to back pain and was put on the DL in 2014 and 2015 with back issues. This appears to be a recurrent problem with Yelich, but hopefully he can avoid the DL in 2016.

Miguel Rojas

Joe Frisaro reported that Rojas tweaked his shoulder on Monday during an at bat. However, it appears the injury was not serious, as he returned to action Tuesday replacing Derek Dietrich in the 8th inning.

Mike Dunn

Dunn was reinstated from the DL yesterday. In an interview with Harvey Fiaklov, he described how frustrating it was to be on the bench:

When they're home it's a little bit easier, coming to games, sitting in the bullpen. But just knowing I got tennis shoes on and I can't help the guys out at all is a little difficult. It's frustrating watching some games.

Dunn is currently the only lefty in the Marlins' bullpen.

Concluding Thoughts

A lot to process the past two weeks. The recurrent injuries to Yelich and Stanton are certainly concerning, but they do not appear to be serious at this time. It will be interesting to see if Stanton and Yelich are both given a few more days off in the coming weeks. Those two are key pieces to the Marlins 2016 season, and must be kept healthy if the team is going to have any shot at the playoffs.