Phillies hope Zack Wheeler’s trip to the injured list is a quick one

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While the Phillies regain one of their stars, another goes down.

Zack Wheeler, the team’s top starting pitcher, is on his way to the 15-day injury list for right forearm tendonitis, the club announced about an hour before Thursday night’s game against the Cincinnati Reds.

Baseball Operations President Dave Dombrowski said the injury was not serious and hoped the righthander would miss just two starts.

Wheeler was set to go on Friday night against Pittsburgh. Bailey Falter now gets that start. Bryce Harper will come off the injured list for that game after missing two months with a broken left thumb.

While Harper won the National League MVP award last season, Wheeler led the majors in innings (213 1/3) and finished second in the league’s Cy Young race. His loss is big as he has a 3.07 ERA in 23 starts.

Over a period of 18 starts from April 28 to August 9, Wheeler had an ERA of 1.97 and a batting average of .206 opponents. During his last two starts, both losses to the New York Mets, he gave up 10 earned runs, 14 basehits and five walks in 11 1/3 innings. After both starts, the pitcher told how good he felt.

“I can’t say this had anything to do with the last two outings, no,” Dombrowski said.

Dombrowski downplayed the seriousness of Wheeler’s problem, stating that the trip to the IL was made out of caution and common sense. No MRI is planned.

“You come in at this time of year with just about every player or pitcher and there’s something that they’re not 100 percent,” Dombrowski said. “He’s had to deal with this, because probably every pitcher on our staff has had something to do with it.

“Lately, he may have been a little more troubled by it. But he felt like he could get the ball and go out to pitch (Friday) but when we talked about it we felt like we’d rather take this thing off and not have him go out and do it to deal with.

‘He’s not happy. He would rather have taken the ball. He also understands that this is a wise thing to do. There is still a long time to go.”

Wheeler is the second all-important Phillies pitcher to go on the IL this week, joining closer Seranthony Dominguez, who has triceps tendonitis. The Phils hope Dominguez returns in early September.

Wheeler’s assignment to the 15-day IL is retroactive to Monday. He would be eligible to return on September 6, which would mean missing just two starts.

The Phillies hope he won’t be out for much longer. He is crucial to the team’s chances of securing a post-season seat and possibly winning a series if he succeeds.

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The Valley Voice
The Valley Voicehttp://thevalleyvoice.org
Christopher Brito is a social media producer and trending writer for The Valley Voice, with a focus on sports and stories related to race and culture.

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