SCOTTSDALE — The Arizona Diamondbacks will be without one of their starting outfielders for most of spring training.
D-backs outfielder Kole Calhoun is slated to undergo a partial medial meniscectomy on his right knee Wednesday to repair a torn meniscus, MLB.com’s Steve Gilbert reported Tuesday.
Arizona Sports’ John Gambadoro adds that the procedure will likely sideline the outfielder for 3-4 weeks, leaving Opening Day up in the air for Calhoun.
“Hopefully it’s not a significant [amount of time missed]. I’m going to stay as optimistic as possible,” skipper Torey Lovullo said. “Anytime one of your best players needs to step away to have a procedure, I’m concerned about him as a person first and foremost and then obviously how he fits in with this team. He is such an important part of this team.”
The outfielder had brought the issue to the team’s attention on Monday, Lovullo said. “He underwent an MRI and met with team doctors before the final prognosis was unearthed.
“I think it was just something that happened during this offseason,” Lovullo said. “He said he felt that there was a little bit of discomfort in some of his workouts. He just felt like it was the right thing to do to let us know there was some discomfort there.”
Calhoun recorded a double and struck out once in the team’s spring opener against the Milwaukee Brewers on Sunday. He did not play Monday.
The outfielder paced the D-backs last season with 16 home runs (tied for seventh among all MLB players) and RBIs (40).
With Calhoun expected to miss some time, Lovullo has an assortment of guys to choose from, including Pavin Smith, Daulton Varsho and Trayce Thompson. Tim Locastro is in the mix at a number of positions as well.
“As I’ve been talking to my staff, it’s an opportunity for somebody else to step up and basically tell Kole, ‘We got you until you get back,’” Lovullo said. “I think that’s going to be our mindset. It is every single day. It’s been that way ever since I’ve been here every single day where we have that next-man-up mentality. We’ve got some good players that are gonna get some opportunities.
“Obviously concerned, I don’t want to sugarcoat that, but I know it’s going to give opportunities to some other guys and I’m excited about that as well.”