Los Angeles Dodgers first baseman Max Muncy is "very unlikely" to play in Wednesday's National League Wild Card Game against the St. Louis Cardinals after he departed Sunday's regular-season finale against the Milwaukee Brewers in the third inning following a collision with Jace Peterson, according to what manager Dave Roberts told reporters on Sunday evening.
The collision left Muncy on the ground with what the team called a left elbow injury. He did walk off on his own power, but he was holding his wrist as he left the field.
The incident happened after Peterson hit a bouncer out in front of the plate. Dodgers catcher Will Smith retrieved the ball and threw to first, but the throw caused Muncy's glove hand to traverse into Peterson's path. Unfortunately, the timing worked out where Peterson ran into Muncy's arm. Here's a look:
Veteran first baseman Albert Pujols checked into the game in Muncy's place.
Muncy had been one of the top performers in the National League this season. He entered Sunday having hit .250/.369/.528 (139 OPS+) with 36 home runs and 94 runs batted in. According to Baseball Reference's calculations, he had been worth five Wins Above Replacement this season, putting him in a tie for 10th in the league.
Longtime baseball fans might remember how former Baltimore Orioles second baseman Brian Roberts got hurt in a similar play against the New York Yankees in September 2005. Roberts suffered ligament and tendon damage that required surgery and a six-month recovery window. Obviously it's unknown at this point if Muncy will face a similar outcome.
Roberts did express hope that Muncy could return if the Dodgers are able to advance beyond the Wild Card Game.