Roman Quinn has suffered a concussion, broke a toe, and strained an elbow. He tore his Achilles and his quadriceps, strained his groin, suffered a cut on his finger that required nine stitches, and another finger injury that needed surgery.
His career, ever since he fractured his wrist two years after being drafted in 2011′s second round, has been defined by injuries. But the one he suffered Saturday in a 5-3 loss to the Rays might be the hardest for Quinn to overcome.
He left the game with what the team called an injury to his left Achilles tendon. The injury was so severe that Quinn had to be carried off the field.
“I don’t expect to get any good news from the MRI,” said manager Joe Girardi, who lifted Quinn back to the dugout with the help of an athletic trainer. “We’re pretty sure that it’s not good.”
Quinn will likely miss the remainder of the season if his Achilles tendon is ruptured, which the team seems to believe it is. Quinn was 20 when he tore his right Achilles during a conditioning drill after the 2013 minor-league season. The injury kept him out for nearly seven months as he missed the first six weeks of the 2014 season.
Saturday’s injury came just four days after he returned from spending three weeks on the injured list with a deep cut on his finger. The Phillies were using him as an extra outfielder off the bench while having him fill in as a starter in right and left field.
Quinn got off to a slow start, but he had six hits this month in 16 at-bats. He injured his Achilles rounding third on Ronald Torreyes’ hit to right field, yet managed to get up and score before needing to be carried off the field.
“He’s been playing well for us,” Girardi said. “He gets a freak injury with the stitches in his finger and then he gets this. It’s really frustrating.”
An Achilles tear is often a devastating injury and Quinn’s recovery from it could have ramifications this winter as he enters a crucial offseason.
For the first time, Quinn will be eligible for salary arbitration this winter. The Phillies will have to decide in December if they want to offer the 28-year-old arbitration -- which will include a raise from the minimum salary Quinn is earning this season -- or let him go.
Quinn is one of baseball’s fastest players, but his ability to stay on the field has limited his ability to showcase that speed. Quinn has averaged to play just 40.75 games over the last four seasons. Girardi, just like his predecessor Gabe Kapler, was quickly enamored by Quinn’s ability to change a game by dropping a bunt single or stealing a bag.
But Girardi, just like Kapler, has seen the injuries pile up.
“I feel for the kid. I really do,” Girardi said. “We’re going to miss him.”
The Phillies replaced Quinn with Matt Joyce, who homered in the seventh to break for an 0-for-28 slump. And they will likely replace him Sunday on the active roster with Lancaster, Pa.’s Travis Jankowski, who was pulled Saturday night after one at-bat in triple A.
“A lot of injuries are going around, but this is a big one,” said Zack Wheeler, who struck out 14 batters in seven innings. “It’s unfortunate and I just feel so bad for Roman. He’s a great guy and you just hate to see that.”
Joyce’s homer tied the game at 3, but it was short lived. The Rays took the lead in the eighth on an infield single by Austin Meadows. Jose Alvarado fielded the ball, but there was no chance for a play at home as the reliever needed to come off the mound to grab it. He allowed another run by walking a batter with the bases loaded to give the Rays a two-run lead.
“It’s really frustrating because he comes in, in a sense, and really does his job,” Girardi said. “But you know, it’s just bad luck in a sense. We’re going for the strikeout there. He gets extremely weak contact. A high chopper. You have speed at third base. You could say he didn’t get the strikeout but it’s not like he gave up a bullet.”
The dynamic of the inning changed two batters before Meadows’ single when Sam Coonrod threw a wild pitch with two strikes. The fastball skipped away from J.T. Realmuto and bounced to the deep backstop at Tropicana Field. Randy Arozarena moved to third as he advanced two bases on the wild pitch. The winning run was now just 90 feet away.
In the fifth, the Phillies lost an outfielder. Three innings later, another loss -- their ninth in 13 games -- was sealed when Alec Bohm retrieved the wild pitch and Arozarena was already at third.
“It changed the whole inning and the complexion of the game,” Girardi said.