Having been scheduled to take to the field in the Tampa Bay Rays‘ Opening Day clash against the Baltimore Orioles, Luke Scott has fallen foul of an injury that may sideline him until the middle of May.
His calf strain will see him out of action until at least April 8, and as a designated hitter, Scott should be looking at an earlier return than the five weeks stated by Joe Maddon.
Having said that, the Rays are now down to their starting outfield trio of Desmond Jennings, who will lead-off this year, Ben Zobrist, and the incoming Sam Fuld. who takes Scott’s place in the Rays’ lineup. Matt Joyce has been moved from his OF starting spot to DH, leaving the only Brandon Guyer on the bench as an emergency outfield option.
This is obviously not an ideal situation for Tampa Bay, who had not slated Fuld to start this early. He is expected to only face RHPs, and while Fuld cracked a three-run HR in the Ray’s penultimate Spring Training outing, he won’t come close to providing the power Scott adds.
If injury were to beset the team once again, they would have to consider an early call from the minors for Wil Myers, the highly-touted prospect acquired from the Kansas City Royals in a trade for, amongst others, starting pitcher James Shields.
Myers has been tipped to be awarded the AL Rookie of the Year this season, and while he sits in the minor leagues now, it was expected that he would make an appearance by the All-Star Break. He has the potential to explode in a lineup that should easily support an exciting rotation.
Whilst Scott’s injury could hamper the team’s start to the season, he should return in time for the start of a tough road trip takes them to Chicago, Kansas City, and Colorado all within ten days.