This is a set of words that no Baltimore Orioles fan wants to read.
Manny Machado appears to have suffered a terrible knee injury in the Orioles-Rays game…
— Buster Olney (@Buster_ESPN) September 23, 2013
Buster Olney is extremely accurate in calling the injury “terrible” as Manny Machado’s knee went in a direction it isn’t designed to go while running through 1st base during Baltimore’s game with the Tampa Bay Rays on Monday afternoon. The exact nature of the damage is unknown at this point, but frankly, it would be a shock if Machado didn’t have a long-term injury with severe ramifications.
If Machado isn’t the “franchise player” for the Orioles, he’s awfully close, and he’s been one of the best third basemen in the league this season at just 21 years old. Thanks to incredible defense and 51 doubles, Machado has a 6.1 WAR season according to FanGraphs this year, and his absence for any lengthy period of time would be devastating.
Baltimore’s dying playoff hopes are suddenly on the backburner as the team awaits word of just how severe this injury might be. 21-year-old franchise cornerstones don’t grow on trees, and with how this one looked, anything and everything seems to be in play moving forward.