Brandon Pfaadt exits in 5th inning vs. Padres after taking comebacker to ankle

Jul 6, 2024, 8:45 PM | Updated: 10:50 pm

A trainer looks at Brandon Pfaadt #32 of the Arizona Diamondbacks during the fifth inning of a base...

A trainer looks at Brandon Pfaadt #32 of the Arizona Diamondbacks during the fifth inning of a baseball game against the San Diego Padres at Petco Park on July 6, 2024 in San Diego, California. (Photo by Denis Poroy/Getty Images)

(Photo by Denis Poroy/Getty Images)

Arizona Diamondbacks starter Brandon Pfaadt had an early exit Saturday after taking a comebacker from San Diego Padres infielder Luis Arráez in the fifth inning.

Pfaadt had allowed just one run and no walks on 62 pitches (48 strikes) through 4.1 innings before Arráez sent a 93.6 mph sinker back the other way at 98 mph, striking Pfaadt near his left ankle as he completed his delivery.

Arizona manager Torey Lovullo and the training staff decided to pull Pfaadt after discussion without letting him try any more pitches that might risk further injury, electing to give Kevin Ginkel the ball for the rest of the fifth.

The team later announced Pfaadt had a left ankle contusion. Lovullo said postgame Pfaadt wanted to stay out there but the risk didn’t make sense. He added initial X-rays were negative.

It was the first time in 18 starts this season that Pfaadt exited before completing the fifth inning. He previously averaged just over six innings per outing.

Ginkel came in to face a deadly duo in the Padres’ order in All-Star starter Jurickson Profar and Jake Cronenworth and got both to strike out swinging.

Ginkel also sat down the side in the Padres’ sixth, thanks in part to two more strikeouts.

Avoiding a longer-term absence from Pfaadt will be key for the D-backs as the team continues to miss starting pitchers Merrill Kelly (shoulder) and Eduardo Rodriguez (lat strain). Jordan Montgomery was also recently added to the injury list with knee inflammation.

Pfaadt has been by far the most available starting pitcher in Arizona’s rotation this season, as his 18 starts lead the team. No other Arizona pitcher has started more than 13 games.

He also leads the team in quality starts with nine; Zac Gallen is second with seven.

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