With the regular season nearly wrapping up, injuries are still commonplace for the Tampa Bay Rays as two more of their usual starts are dealing with ailments.
Kevin Kiermaier, who has spent a fare chunk of the season on the disabled list already, is out due to illness, showing multiple flu-like symptoms. The team is hoping that it turns out to be a severe head cold.
Matt Duffy meanwhile has been dealing with a strained lower back.
Duffy, according to Cash, has been dealing with lower back strain/tightness, and hopes to learn more when re-evaluation. #Rays— Steve Carney (@stevecarney) September 10, 2018
Kiermaier has been one of the hottest hitting players on the team over the past month of play, after going through a mega-slump for most of the regular season. Despite the poor offensive showing, he has managed to accrue 1.2 fWAR on the year, thanks to his superb skills in the outfield. On the offensive side of things, since August 15th, he has hit .359/.398/.628 over his last 85 plate appearances, giving him a 81 wRC+ on the year.
It’s been a comeback year for Duffy after missing all of the 2017 season due to a foot injury. He has been an above replacement level player (2.0 fWAR), hitting .297/.357/.370 with 4 HR over 512 plate appearances. He has spent some time on the disabled list already in 2018, with a strained hamstring, but other than that, 2018 had been an excellent rebound year for Duffy.
The Rays are certainly hoping to see both guys back in the lineup before the end of the season, as they push for a potential wild card spot.