At least Nelson Cruz didn’t injure himself with the leaping, twisting, hip-bump celebration with Robinson Cano after a sixth-inning home run Saturday.
Instead, it was slipping on the steps moments later after he returned to the dugout.
Yep, the Mariners couldn’t make it through the first week of the season unscathed.
(As someone in the sports department suggested, it’s already time to channel the movie “Major League,” and summon Jobu and a sacrificial chicken.)
Starting catcher Mike Zunino was a late scratch before the season opener Thursday against the Cleveland Indians and the next day was placed on the 10-day disabled list with a strained left oblique.
And Saturday, Cruz twisted his ankle on the bottom step in the dugout as he was putting his batting helmet and gear away.
Guillermo Heredia replaced Cruz when his turn next came up in the batting order – with no outs and runner on second in the eighth inning of a one-run game. (For the record, Heredia flied out to left, the M’s failed to score and lost 6-5).
“That last at-bat, I was like, ‘Wow, this should be my chance, this should be my at-bat,’” Cruz told reporters. “But it is what it is. I will be fine.”
At least the M’s hope so. X-rays on Cruz’s ankle came back negative, but he is scheduled for an MRI on Sunday.
And the 37-year-old was wearing a protective boot after the game.
“When I heard that, I wanted to throw up,” M’s manager Scott Servais said. “I really don’t know any other way to put it. Our club has just battled through a bunch of nagging injuries in spring training and early in the season.”
Cruz homered in each of the first two games of the season. On Thursday, his first-inning, two-run shot off Cleveland’s Corey Kluber, the reigning American League Cy Young Award winner, provided the difference in a 2-1 victory.
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