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Padres' Yu Darvish Exits vs. Diamondbacks with Back Injury

Joseph Zucker@@JosephZuckerFeatured ColumnistAugust 13, 2021

San Diego Padres starting pitcher Yu Darvish (11) pumps his fist after getting the final out during the sixth inning of a baseball game against the Los Angeles Dodgers Monday, June 21, 2021, in San Diego. (AP Photo/Denis Poroy)
Denis Poroy/Associated Press

San Diego Padres starting pitcher Yu Darvish suffered lower back tightness during his Thursday night start against the Arizona Diamondbacks, the team announced.

Darvish was lifted in the third after going 2.2 innings with six hits, five earned runs, one walk and four strikeouts.

San Diego Padres @Padres

Update from the clubhouse: RHP Yu Darvish was removed from the game with lower back tightness.

The Padres previously placed the right-hander on the 10-day injured list on July 11 with left hip inflammation, a move that was retroactive to July 9. Prior to the IL designation, manager Jayce Tingler said Darvish had been dealing with minor hip and back trouble that put his status for the All-Star Game in jeopardy.

The Japanese star has been excellent in his first year with San Diego. Through 22 starts, he's 7-6 with a 3.43 ERA and 3.67 FIP while averaging 10.8 strikeouts per nine innings, according to Baseball Reference.

The race is tight at the top of the National League West. The San Francisco Giants continue to exceed expectations, while the Los Angeles Dodgers have bounced back after slipping to 17-16 in early May. Still, the Padres are on track to claim one of the two wild-card berths in the NL.

As much as the staff will miss Darvish in the short term, this illustrates why the front office was so aggressive in adding depth during the offseason.