Tough opener in DC leads to long team chat

Jazz, Cooper both placed on IL after MRIs confirmed their diagnoses

July 20th, 2021

WASHINGTON -- Hours after MRIs confirmed the initial diagnoses for (left shoulder bone bruise/contusion) and (left elbow sprain), both of whom were placed on the 10-day injured list, the Marlins were handed their most lopsided defeat of the season in an 18-1 loss to the Nationals on Monday night at Nationals Park.

Manager Don Mattingly, whose club has dropped four of five to open the second half, didn’t hold his postgame Zoom until 49 minutes after the last out was recorded. When asked whether there was a team meeting, he simply said, "We talked about some stuff, but nothing that I'm going to share."

If there is a silver lining, it’s the news on Chisholm and Cooper. Before the MRI results came in, Mattingly didn’t seem optimistic based on how they felt earlier in the day. Though Mattingly didn’t reveal timetables for their return, he expects to see both of those players back on the field in 2021.

“I felt pretty good about it,” Mattingly said. “It could have went differently. I thought it was as good as we could have asked for with both guys, so I really felt a sigh of relief for both of these guys that you're not going through those crazy rehabs and things like that.”

According to Healthline, a bone bruise happens when one has a small injury on the surface of a bone. Symptoms include stiffness and swelling of the joint. They can last anywhere from a few days to a few months. Giants outfielder Alex Dickerson went on the IL for a similar issue on May 7, and he returned on June 21.

Per Penn Medicine, elbow sprains are injuries to the ligaments around the joint, and can happen when the arm is bent or twisted quickly or forcibly. The ligaments help to connect the upper arm bone (the humerus) and the bones that make up the forearm (the radius and ulna) to the joints in the elbow. Pulled or torn ligaments can limit one’s ability to move the elbow. Noninvasive treatments can effectively treat an elbow sprain, though severely torn cases would require surgery to repair the damaged ligament.

Chisholm sustained the injury trying to make a sprawling catch on Bryce Harper's bloop single in the first inning of Sunday's 7-4 loss to the Phillies. He was unable to snare the ball and landed awkwardly on his left shoulder in shallow right field. Chisholm was in obvious pain as he walked off the field with his left arm pinned to his side and his right arm covering his face. X-rays came back negative on Sunday. Cooper exited the series finale in the eighth after his arm bent awkwardly as he attempted to catch a throw from catcher Jorge Alfaro on a bunt attempt.

Veteran Joe Panik (1-for-4) got the start at second base for Chisholm, while Jon Berti (0-for-4) manned the hot corner like he has in Brian Anderson’s extended absence. As corresponding roster moves for Chisholm and Cooper, the Marlins recalled outfielder Lewis Brinson from Triple-A Jacksonville and selected the contract of right-hander Andrew Bellatti from the Jumbo Shrimp. Brinson started in left field and went 1-for-4, while Bellatti gave up five runs in 1 1/3 innings in his first MLB appearance since 2015.

It turns out another teammate also got banged up over the forgettable weekend in Philadelphia. Starling Marte, whose name is one of the most prevalent in trade rumors, wasn’t in the starting lineup after tweaking his shoulder on a stolen base Sunday. Mattingly expects him back Tuesday. The Marlins also lost outfield prospect Jesús Sánchez for an undisclosed reason Friday and Pablo López to a right rotator cuff strain Saturday. The latter came at an especially inopportune time as the club played in essence a pair of doubleheaders because of a suspended game that continued Sunday.

So Ross Detwiler opened for the fifth time this season in Monday’s series opener in D.C. and was chased before recording an out in the second, surrendering eight runs, including four homers. Miami would send backup catcher Sandy León to the mound with one out in the seventh inning, and Juan Soto greeted him with a three-run homer -- his second of the evening and the sixth for Washington.

Mattingly said it wasn’t a matter of effort from his team. In fact, it was a rare blowout loss in a season of many close games. Instead of chipping away, Miami fell behind and Washington kept piling on.

“This isn't a really easy one to wash off, but we're going to be ready to go tomorrow,” Mattingly said.