Phillies’ Ranger Suárez exits game vs. Cardinals after taking line drive to hand


PHILADELPHIA — Six days ago, when Ranger Suárez dodged a comebacker at Coors Field, he lay on the grass for a few extra seconds. He is calm and cool, but this shook him a bit. Not much has disrupted the Phillies left-hander in 2024.

Then, on Saturday night, he took a baseball hit at 106 mph to his left hand. He picked it up, lobbed it to first base, then winced in pain. He went straight toward the clubhouse and, soon, the Phillies made a call to the bullpen.

Suárez was done after two innings.

The Phillies said Suárez had a bruised left hand and they would evaluate him as the game against the St. Louis Cardinals continued. His two scoreless innings before the injury lowered his ERA to 1.70. He has been one of the most valuable pitchers in the sport over the first two months of the season.

So, there was concern.

Even if a further examination reveals no broken bones, the Phillies can be conservative with Suárez. His next start is slated for Saturday in London. The Phillies can rearrange their rotation, if needed, with only two games in a five-day span. Suárez could easily be skipped for a turn.

The Phillies were cognizant of Suárez’s rising workload even before he was struck by the comebacker. So, in a best-case scenario, maybe this is a slight pause to his season.

The alternative — a potential long absence with Spencer Turnbull sliding into Suárez’s rotation spot — isn’t cataclysmic. But it would be a significant blow to the Phillies, who have the best record in Major League Baseball.

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(Photo of Ranger Suárez, right, and J.T. Realmuto after Suárez was hit by a line drive: Derik Hamilton / Associated Press)





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