Ahmed and Luplow of the D-backs start a baseball business; Rojas still in the training room
PHOENIX — The Arizona Diamondbacks are about to embark on their 2022 campaign.
Unfortunately for the D-backs, the team enters opening day with a handful of players already struggling with injuries – three of which are hitters.
Shortstop Nick Ahmed (shoulder), infielder Josh Rojas (oblique) and outfielder Jordan Luplow (oblique) open the year on the 10-day injured list, and manager Torey Lovullo provided a update on each of them ahead of Thursday’s first pitch.
“(Ahmed) started a baseball business, he came out of the practice room,” Lovullo said. “He had taken ground balls – it’s his right shoulder, so he took ground balls and did all kinds of activities on the field without throwing a baseball.
“He started swinging and making contact with the ball (off the tee) and doing flips a few days ago, so he’s slowly starting his transition.”
Lovullo added that Luplow was in a similar boat and “started doing very light baseball activity.” It comes after the Diamondbacks manager said the outfielder will be out “for a while” on March 30.
However, Rojas ‘didn’t leave the training room at this point’.
The absence of Ahmed and Rojas gives Geraldo Perdomo the opportunity to start as the D-backs’ opening day shortstop and hit the No. 9 hole. His midfield partner fielder, second baseman Ketel Marte, will be second in the lineup with outfielder Daulton Varsho leading – and this roster shift is intended.
“Your best hitter, your most creative hitter, your hardest hitter hits second and I want to create as many run-scoring opportunities for Ketel as possible,” Lovullo explained.
“So yeah, I liked the way Perdomo watches the ball and kicks while he’s at home plate. I think he’s going to be on base a lot for the turnaround for this lineup, which will include Varsho. I want so have Ketel hit with two men on base if possible.
The D-backs host the San Diego Padres at Chase Field on Opening Day at 6:40 p.m. 98.7 FM Arizona Sports Station.