Max Muncy Clarifies Hamstring Injury, Hopeful For Quick Return To Dodgers Lineup

When Los Angeles Dodgers manager Dave Roberts discussed the MRI that Max Muncy underwent on his left hamstring, he said it revealed a Grade 2 strain.

Despite the nature of that injury typically being accompanied by a recovery period of multiple weeks, Roberts said the Dodgers hoped Muncy would be back in the lineup on Saturday. The prospect of Muncy returning against the San Francisco Giants didn’t seem plausible, but it could end up being possible due to miscommunication.

“I misspoke,” Roberts said Thursday. “I thought it was Grade 2. I thought I heard that, but it was a low-grade (strain) but it doesn’t really change his time to return. It’s all kind of how he’s feeling.”

Muncy further confirmed his left hamstring strain is relatively mild and he remains hopeful — if not optimistic — of playing this weekend.

“I’m feeling OK. It’s definitely not a Grade 2 (strain), and hopefully I’m back sooner rather than later,” Muncy said. “It’s kind of a day-to-day thing at this point. I’m trying to pass tests each day to see where it’s at, see how I feel. Got a couple good days so far.

“Maybe not quite where I want to be at, but it’s just the unfortunate thing with the nature of this injury.”

Muncy has taken grounders at third base over the past two days and he also did some hitting on Thursday. “My running is not quite where I was hoping it was going to be at based on how it’s feeling, but that’s why it’s day-to-day,” he said.

Although Muncy injured his hamstring while running out a ground ball in his last at-bat of the series finale against the Philadelphia Phillies, his bigger concern is playing third base.

“In my mind I would say defense is probably going to be the biggest thing because at third base it’s just reaction. So if a ground ball is hit to your left or right, you don’t necessarily have time to think about, ‘I’ve got to put the governor on,'” Muncy explained.

“You’ve got to go for it. So for me, I would say that’s probably the biggest issue. Coming out of the batter’s box, you can always control your effort and how hard you’re running. If I was at second or in the outfield, you could see the ball and have time to react. You can’t do that at third.”

While the Dodgers don’t expect Muncy back in their lineup until the second game of the series against the Giants at the earliest, Friday is viewed as a tipping point in some regard. If there is not enough progress, the Dodgers are likely to place Muncy on the 10-day injured list and backdate his stint.

Max Muncy hamstring injuries

This is the second hamstring injury Muncy has dealt with in the past two weeks, but the first instance was only a cramp that kept him out of the lineup one game and ultimately didn’t require an MRI.

“I would say it’s completely unrelated. It’s two completely different spots,” Muncy said. “In Tampa, it was literally just a cramp. That’s all it was. That’s why we canceled the MRI. This is something more, and that’s why we got the imaging done. Thankfully, it’s something mild. Hopefully I can get over it before not too long.”

In addition to Muncy being a key member of the Dodgers lineup, he’s also had a wealth of success against the Giants throughout his career. However, the 32-year-old isn’t allowing that to factor into his desire to return.

“My motivation to get back is I love playing and I don’t love sitting. It kills me,” Muncy said.

“It doesn’t help that it’s the Giants, but I just want to be back playing and doing everything I can to help the team win. I want to do everything I can to help, and you can’t do that when you’re sitting on the bench.”

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