Braves outfielder Adam Duvall came out of tonight’s NL Championship Series Game 1 in the second inning, per various reporters (including Jeff Passan of ESPN and David O’Brien of the Athletic). Duvall clutched at his left side following a swing and was immediately removed. Cristian Pache finished the plate appearance and took over defensively the following inning. Manager Brian Snitker confirmed on the Fox broadcast Duvall had injured his oblique, O’Brien adds.
There’s no official word on his status, but it seems unlikely Duvall will be back this postseason. Oblique strains typically take weeks to recover. While it’s not yet clear precisely what Duvall suffered, Snitker noted he “(hurt) it pretty good” (relays Bill Plunkett of the Orange County Register).
It’s a significant blow to the Braves’ offense. Duvall has hit well for Atlanta the past two seasons, including a .237/.301/.532 line with 16 home runs in 209 plate appearances this year. Pache now seems likely to be thrust into a regular role. The 21-year-old is a supreme young talent and figures to play well defensively, but he has all of four career MLB plate appearances under his belt.
The Braves can replace Duvall on the postseason roster if his prognosis is as bad as it seems. Ender Inciarte has been a healthy scratch throughout the playoffs and seems likely to join the club. Ronald Acuña Jr., Nick Markakis and primary DH Marcell Ozuna are the only other listed outfielders on Atlanta’s NLCS roster, although infielders Charlie Culberson and Austin Riley have some experience in the grass.