Stanton expected to play on Saturday

ST. LOUIS — After testing his knee for about 40 minutes on the field at Busch Stadium on Friday afternoon, Giancarlo Stanton was given the thumbs up to be back in the lineup on Saturday.

The 22-year-old right fielder expects to play on Saturday and Sunday, and then participate in the Home Run Derby on Monday at Kansas City. The Marlins’ lone All-Star also is planning on representing the ballclub at Tuesday’s Midsummer Classic.

Stanton felt his right knee lock up during Monday’s game at Milwaukee, and he hasn’t played since. On Tuesday, an MRI revealed “loose bodies” in his right knee. The fragments will have to be removed surgically at some point. But for now, Stanton is looking to manage his knee with treatment.

Basically, as long as the Marlins are in the race, and he doesn’t feel he will create any further damage, he will hold off on a procedure.

“I’ve had knee problems before, so I’m not new to the fact of managing it,” Stanton said. “It’s just new to this feeling. I know my body well. So, it’s just a matter of what’s it going to do, and tell me.”

On the field, Stanton did some running and throwing. He had fly balls hit to him, to see how he reacted to fielding. He also ran the bases.

The sensation in his knee, he says, is “weird.”

“Just weird,” he said. “It wasn’t restricting, but it was a weird feeling with it bouncing around in there. But, I’ll play tomorrow.”

Stanton was told surgery could mean him missing two to eight weeks.

“It’s a big gap, but it all depends to the reaction to it,” he said. “It just depends. I didn’t have a lot of swelling or bruising. So that means it would be however my knee reacts to being cut open.”

For the rest of the season, the Marlins will monitor their 22-year-old slugger, who paces the team with 19 home runs and 50 RBIs.

‘I’ve got to read my body,” he said. “If I’m changing the way I run or hit or anything, then that is going to lead to other problems and change the way I play on the field.”

If that is the case, he could get surgery before the season ends.

“A lot thrown at once, but I can handle it,” he said.

The encouraging news is the swelling in the knee has subsided since Monday.

“Yeah, it’s gotten better each day, which I did not think it would,” he said.

Joe Frisaro

 

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