J.P. Crawford leaves game with ankle injury

May 29th, 2019

SEATTLE -- Mariners shortstop had a two-hit night spoiled by a late injury on Tuesday night, as the promising youngster rolled his left ankle trying to avoid the tag in a rundown in the eighth inning of an 11-4 loss to the Rangers.

Crawford went 2-for-3 with a double and a walk, raising his season average to .279 since being promoted from Triple-A Tacoma on May 10.

“That was a gut punch to everybody,” Mariners manager Scott Servais said. “J.P. is playing great. Not just tonight, but this might have been one of his best games since he’s been up. So very disappointing.”

Crawford was sent for X-rays after the game, and Servais said the hope was it’s just a sprain, though an injured-list stint seems almost certain.

The 24-year-old was acquired from the Phillies in December as part of the Jean Segura trade as one of general manager Jerry Dipoto’s key offseason acquisitions in his rebuilding process. He was replaced for the final inning by veteran Tim Beckham, who had handled shortstop duties prior to Crawford’s recent promotion.

Losing a player they hope to be building around going forward made Tuesday’s loss even tougher.

“We’ll keep our fingers crossed,” Servais said. “You can’t say enough about the way he’s playing. You can just see the confidence starting to come out of him. He made a couple really nice plays at shortstop tonight. Swung the bat great. It’s just unfortunate.”

Crawford was on second base following a two-out single by rookie Shed Long when Mallex Smith lined a hard grounder that first baseman Ronald Guzman snared with a diving stop deep behind the bag. Smith beat Guzman to the base for an infield single, but Long raced around second and wound up at third alongside Crawford.

Crawford broke for home, drawing the throw from Guzman, but twisted his ankle badly trying to get around the tag from third baseman Asdrubal Cabrera and went down in pain, before being helped off the field by Servais and assistant athletic trainer Matt Toth.

“We’ll know more tomorrow,” Servais said. “He’s certainly going to be out for a while, so we’ll need to make an adjustment there and see where it takes us.”