Anthony Santander, the former Rule 5 draft pick turned breakout star of the Orioles season, is going on the injured list with an oblique strain and could miss the final three weeks of the season.
“Tony is a huge loss for us, and I’m really happy with the year that he’s had,” manager Brandon Hyde said. “He’s really come on the map for me, all the positive things I said about him from the end of the year last year, he’s improved even more. That’s a huge loss for us, and he’s very disappointed.”
Santander, who hit 20 home runs after being called up in the middle of 2019, had one of the best starts to this shortened season of any player in baseball. Even with a little regression, he ends the year batting .261 with an .890 OPS, 11 home runs and 13 doubles in 37 games while lowering his strikeout rate significantly and playing a strong right field.
The 25-year-old Venezuelan left the first game of Friday’s doubleheader with the New York Yankees with discomfort in the oblique area after a swing, and didn’t play in the second game. With the precedent that even mild oblique injuries keep players out for multiple weeks, Santander might not be rushed back with the season ending on Sept. 27.