D-backs' depth tested by Walker's injury

First baseman day to day after he's struck by errant throw

April 4th, 2021

The D-backs lost for the third time in as many games, falling to the Padres, 7-0, on Saturday night at Petco Park. A bigger concern was whether Arizona would lose first baseman for any length of time.

Fernando Tatis Jr. led off the bottom of the fourth for the Padres by hitting a grounder to the right of shortstop , who fielded the ball and tried to throw on the move to first base. The throw one-hopped Walker and smacked him just under his left eye. The area under Walker’s eye began to swell while head athletic trainer Ryan DiPanfilo tended to him on the field.

Walker tried to talk his way into staying in the game, but manager Torey Lovullo said no.

“I made the final decision on that,” Lovullo said. “I just felt like I wasn’t getting a very good response with what I was offering. ‘Dip’ was out there with me, and I think we know each other well enough that we’re throwing enough at the athlete -- in this case, Christian -- and Dip was compromising and we’re trying to get the most amount of information from Christian and it wasn’t satisfying either one of us.

“Christian did not want to come out of the game.”

The D-backs can ill afford to lose another key contributor, as they are already without the services of shortstop , right fielder and starting pitcher .

They especially do not want to subtract from an offense that has struggled the past two games. On Saturday, for instance, the D-backs did not get a runner past first base all night.

Lovullo said that Walker was diagnosed with a contusion and a cut under his left eye.

“I just spoke to the medical team, and he’ll be day to day,” Lovullo said. “That’s a bit of positive news. I think we dodged a bullet there.”