Marlins outfielder Starling Marte left today’s game in the middle of a ninth-inning plate appearance due to what appeared to be an injury to his side or oblique area.  After the first two pitches of the at-bat, Marte grabbed at his side, and was taken out of the game after being observed by manager Don Mattingly and a team trainer.

Speaking to The Miami Herald’s Jordan McPherson and other reporters after the game, Mattingly said that Marte wanted to keep playing, but the skipper opted to be cautious.

He’s a big part of what we do.  He’s that cog in the offense, defense, on the bases….That’s the reason to pull him out of the game,” Mattingly said.  “You don’t want to lose this guy for six weeks.  It could be a couple weeks.  It could be 10 days.  It could be five days.  We want it to be the minimum.”

While Marte will undergo further testing to determine the extent of the injury, Mattingly comments seem to indicate that the center fielder will miss at least some time, and likely make a trip to the 10-day injured list.  If the injury is indeed oblique-related, it would be the third such injury of Marte’s career, though the first two IL stints (in 2012 and 2018) didn’t keep Marte out of action for too long.

Nonetheless, any setback is an unfortunate interruption to Marte’s superb start, as he had a .310/.414/.483 slash line and two home runs over his first 70 PA of the season.  Magneuris Sierra is the most probable candidate to step into center field duty if Marte does have to miss an extended amount of time, and Miami could also call up Lewis Brinson or Monte Harrison from the alternate training site.