Rangers' mishandling of Corey Seager’s injury is huge gift for Astros

Texas appears to have royally screwed up Corey Seager's latest injury.
Oct 23, 2023; Houston, Texas, USA; Texas Rangers shortstop Corey Seager (5) turns a double play over
Oct 23, 2023; Houston, Texas, USA; Texas Rangers shortstop Corey Seager (5) turns a double play over / Erik Williams-USA TODAY Sports

Players fighting through injuries that they really shouldn't is not a new phenomenon in the game of baseball. The Houston Astros had their own case just last year when Jose Abreu was going through the worst slump of his career while dealing with a back injury before he finally relented and got put on the shelf to receive treatment.

One can understand why players do this, as infuriating as it can be. Baseball has a long season and every single player gets nagging little pulls and tweaks that they have to work through. Sometimes guys think it's something minor and it turns out to be more, and sometimes players know something is wrong but will do anything to stay on the field for their team.

Just because it's understandable doesn't make it a good idea, though.

Case in point is Rangers star Corey Seager. Seager, who together an phenomenal 2023 season in route to a second place finish in the AL MVP voting. But he also spent some time on the injured list with a hamstring issue early in the season, and then suffered a sprained thumb later on.

So, when the Rangers were in the thick of their playoff run, Seager simply tried to play through a pain that he was feeling in his left hip. Texas won the World Series with plenty of help from Seager, but the pain didn't go away.

In fact, it was revealed that after trying to rest and heal during the offseason, his pain continued to the point where Seager eventually was diagnosed with a sports hernia that required surgery in late January, putting his availability for Opening Day in doubt.

Corey Seager's injury status could give the Astros a head start in 2024

Now, it obviously isn't Seager's fault that he got hurt. It certainly stinks that the injury bug kept biting him in 2023, and it speaks to his persistence that he was still able to post a 1.013 OPS with 33 home runs. However, where the Rangers and Seager made their mistake was just hoping the problem would go away until far too late in the offseason.

For the Astros, this is yet another gift from the Rangers this offseason. Houston was already exceedingly fortunate that Texas decided to not make many moves coming off a World Series title because of the uncertainty of their TV deal. Now, not only did the Rangers not improve their roster much, but they also may have to add yet another one of their stud players to an ever-growing injured list.

Will Seager be down for long? Probably not, given that sports hernia surgeries are fairly routine. However, Seager's comments about the injury cast a lot of doubt on whether or not he will be ready for Opening Day. As of now, he is being limited to riding an exercise bike and doing light workouts on the sidelines.

With the 2024 season just a month away and with no timeline yet for Seager's return, the Astros could find themselves with a prime opportunity to put some distance in the AL West between themselves and the Rangers early on. In the case of Seager, Texas may have only themselves to blame.

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