Twins shortstop Carlos Correa has been diagnosed with a muscle strain in his left foot arch and plantar fasciitis, per John Shipley of the St. Paul Pioneer Press. Correa hasn’t yet been placed on the injured list but it seems like that’s still on the table. “I think we get to Friday and some of our decisions might be made for us,” manager Rocco Baldelli says.
Correa sat out Tuesday’s game with a bruised left heel and he had an MRI, per Dan Hayes of MLB.com. Although some inflammation was found, it seemed like a minor issue that could allow him to return in a few days and he sat out today’s contest as well. Now it seems that further testing has found that the issue is a bit more serious than initially thought and the club will have to decide whether to put him officially on the shelf or play shorthanded for a few days.
Many fans will read about Correa’s foot and immediately think of the hoopla that surrounded his free agency this winter when he twice had nine-figure agreements scuttled by health concerns. He and the Giants agreed to a 13-year, $350M deal but they backed out at the last second, leading Correa to pivot to the Mets and a 12-year, $315M deal. Both of those clubs became wary over the health of Correa’s ankle, though that was in his right leg while this week’s issue is with Correa’s left foot.
When those deals fell through, Correa landed with the Twins on a six-year, $200M deal with four vesting options that could take the full payout to $270M over 10 years. The shortstop has scuffled out of the gate here in 2023, currently hitting .213/.302/.396 through 192 plate appearances for a 92 wRC+. That’s well shy of his career output but it’s likely that poor fortune is playing a role, as his .252 batting average on balls in play is well below his .315 career mark.
It would be fair to expect Correa to get better results going forward via positive regression but that might have to wait a bit, depending on how long this foot injury lingers. Though it doesn’t seem like this is especially concerning on its own, the club is dealing with a growing injury problem overall. Infielder/outfielder Joey Gallo missed today’s game with a sore hamstring, per Do-Hyoung Park of MLB.com, and the club might want to rest him a few more times. Unlike Correa, Gallo is out to a roaring start this year, hitting 11 home runs already while walking in 14.2% of his plate appearances. That led to a .211/.328/.561 batting line and 141 wRC+.
The Twins also have six position players on the injured list, with Jorge Polanco, Max Kepler, Trevor Larnach, Nick Gordon, Gilberto Celestino and Royce Lewis all on the shelf. While the issues of Correa and Gallo seem to be on the minor side, it will continue to test their depth during a time when it’s already being stretched. Since the club was largely undone by injuries in 2022, they will surely be hoping for a bit better luck in that department in the months to come as they look to hang onto their slim lead in the American League Central.