The Miami Marlins have made the decision to sit veteran Neil Walker as he heals from a recent hamstring injury, according to reports.
The Miami Marlins have announced that veteran infielder Neil Walker has been given time off to deal with a hamstring injury. The move to sit Walker doesn’t mean he will be out of the lineup completely. According to MLB.com, the 33-year-old can still come in as a pinch hitter.
There are no plans to use him in the field for defensive purposes while he deals with this situation.
Walker signed a 1-year, $2,000,000 contract with the Marlins late this offseason to provide versatility at first base and in the outfield. He has also spent time at second base in his career. Walker’s presence is also supposed to have an impact on a young lineup and in the clubhouse.
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"Per Joe Frisaro, “Walker tweaked his hamstring in Thursday’s 3-1, 10-inning win against the Phillies at Citizens Bank Park. He felt some discomfort after his two-out double in the 10th inning, which set up Starlin Castro’s two-run, game-winning home run.”"
While Neil Walker sits down, the Marlins got a bit of good news on the injury front. Right fielder Garrett Cooper is closer to returning to the team’s parent roster. Cooper has been sidelined since the third game of the season because of a calf injury. The 28-year-old was Miami’s Opening Bay right fielder but suffered the injury in the second game if this season.
Cooper was also injured in the second game of last season when he was plunked on the wrist, which took away virtually all of his 2018 campaign. His ability to play in the outfield but also take some reps at first base could help Walker take his time in coming back at his own pace.
The Marlins currently own an 8-20 record and are one of the worst hitting teams in the Majors.
In Neil Walker, the Marlins have gotten some pop from his spot in the lineup. He has hit three home runs, something the team needs in terms of power hitting. It was hoped that Cooper would also provide another power source in the middle of the lineup.
Walker did not play in the Marlins 5-1 loss to the Philadelphia Phillies on Sunday on the road. The team has a day off on Monday before facing the Cleveland Indians from Marlins Park on Tuesday. He is expected to be re-evaluated by the medical staff when the team returns home from the road trip.
"“I had a hamstring injury two years ago, and it’s a little inflammation in the same spot,” Walker said."