It’s never a good thing when players get injured during meaningless games. Dodgers fans know that feeling all too well after losing Justin Turner for a good chunk of the 2018 season after a Spring Training injury.
So it’s understandable that Dodgers fans held their collective breath when Austin Barnes took a heater off of his left hand in an exhibition game against the Diamondbacks on Sunday evening. Barnes stayed in the game to run but was replaced in the next inning defensively by Rocky Gale.
Austin Barnes, hit on the left hand by a pitch, replaced by Rocky Gale behind the plate.
— Ken Gurnick (@kengurnick) July 20, 2020
The way it sounded from the television, it wouldn’t have been a surprise to hear that Barnes had broken bones. The noise the ball made when it hit his hand almost sounded like it had struck his bat, but it was all hand. Thankfully, the Dodgers got him in for x-rays on his hand very quickly.
Right after the game was over, the Dodgers released that Barnes’ x-rays were negative and that he would sit out the game tomorrow. The team expects him back in the exhibition games against the Angels on Tuesday.
In terms of depth, losing a catcher at this point is probably the worst thing that could happen to the Dodgers. After Rocky Gale, Will Smith is the only other catcher aside from Barnes that is ready to play at the big league level. The Dodgers also have Keibert Ruiz, who has not reported to camp, as well as Diego Cartaya.