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Jung Hoo Lee Leaves Game With Left Shoulder Strain

Jung Hoo Lee Leaves Game With Left Shoulder Strain

Giants center fielder Jung Hoo Lee left today’s game with the Reds after suffering what the Giants later announced was a left shoulder strain.  Lee made a leaping attempt to catch a Jeimer Candelario fly ball in the first inning, but the ball hit the top of the wall for a three-run double, while Lee’s arm made hard contact with the padding atop the fence.  The awkward collision left Lee in obvious pain, and he was favoring his left arm as he left the field with the team trainer.

Manager Bob Melvin will surely provide media with an update on Lee following the game, but it certainly looks like a trip to the 10-day injured list is in order.  Lee was just making his return to the lineup today after missing San Francisco’s previous three games with a minor foot injury, after he fouled a pitch off himself in Wednesday’s 8-6 win over the Rockies.

Lee’s situation adds to the Giants’ recent injury woes, as the team has lost five position players to the IL in a little over a week’s time.  Michael Conforto was just placed on the 10-day IL earlier today due to a hamstring strain, with Conforto joining Austin Slater (concussion symptoms), Nick Ahmed (wrist sprain), Jorge Soler (shoulder strain), and backup catcher Tom Murphy (knee sprain) on the sidelines.  Patrick Bailey was activated from the seven-day concussion-related IL yesterday, but was a late scratch from today’s lineup, as the catcher is dealing with a viral illness and could possibly miss a few more days.

Losing all of these regulars isn’t good news for a team that was already having trouble generating offense, and the Giants will have a particular issue in the outfield with Lee, Conforto, and Slater all out.  Luis Matos was called up to take Conforto’s roster spot today, so he’ll join Mike Yastrzemski, Heliot Ramos, and utilityman Tyler Fitzgerald in trying to fill in all the gaps in the outfield depth chart.  LaMonte Wade Jr. and Brett Wisely could also chip in for corner outfield duty, and Wade Meckler might be the next call-up from Triple-A since Meckler is already on the 40-man roster.

For Lee himself, a significant injury would be a very unfortunate way to begin his first season in Major League Baseball.  The outfielder signed a six-year, $113MM deal (the fourth-largest contract for any free agent last winter) with the Giants back in December, with the team also adding a $18.825MM posting fee to the Kiwoom Heroes, Lee’s old Korea Baseball Organization club.  Lee…

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