Kansas City Royals right fielder Jarrod Dyson strained his right oblique during Wednesday's spring training game against the Texas Rangers, and it is uncertain when he will be able to return to action.
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Yost Comments on Dyson's Timeline for Recovery
Thursday, March 3
Manager Ned Yost told reporters Dyson is "likely" out for six weeks with a Grade 2 oblique strain.
Dyson's Injury Harms Chances of Winning Starting Job
Over his first six years in the majors, Dyson carved his niche with the Royals as a reserve outfielder who provided blazing speed off of the bench. Since 2012, Dyson has recorded a combined 126 stolen bases in 399 games.
He was a part of one of the biggest moments in Royals history, scoring the go-ahead run on Christian Colon's single in the decisive Game 5 of the World Series against the New York Mets.
Heading into 2016, Dyson had a real chance of winning the starting right field job, per Dodd, as he was set to compete with Paulo Orlando. Last year's starter, Alex Rios, is still on the free-agent market and won't return to the team.
"Man, I’m ready to play every day,” Dyson told Dodd. “Been ready.”
This injury, though, keeps the door open for the right field competition as Orlando will be in the mix. So will Travis Snider, a 27-year-old who replaced Dyson after he left Wednesday's game. Snider batted .232 with four home runs last season with the Pittsburgh Pirates and Baltimore Orioles.
Jose Martinez could also be in the mix. He's another 27-year-old who hit .382 in Triple-A ball last season.
"But we’ll see how it plays. Quite frankly, I’ve been very impressed with Snider. And I know Paulo and Dyson; both of those guys have come in and been very impressive early," Yost told Dodd before Wednesday's game. "I’ve been impressed with Martinez. I like what I see out of him.”
The longer Dyson is sidelined, the more likely another player can work his way into the lineup and take playing time away from the 31-year-old when the regular season starts up in April. Instead of focusing on playing every day, he'll have to prove that he's healthy and work his way back into the lineup to help the Royals defend their World Series crown.
Stats courtesy of Baseball-Reference.com