Andre Ethier has finally decided the pain in his knee is too much, and he’s made the decision we all called for nearly two weeks ago:
Ethier will seek a second opinion on his right knee. The team and Andre have decided that since the knee has not improved, he should discontinue playing and seek all opinions to determine the next course of action.
That’s via the official Dodger twitter, and Ethier is of course not in the lineup for the first game of today’s doubleheader, with Jerry Sands and Juan Rivera flanking Matt Kemp in the outfield corners. Dylan Hernandez of the LA Times confirms that Ethier is done for the season. The funny thing is, since this whole knee business broke on August 28, Ethier’s been red-hot, hitting .400/.464/.600 in 28 plate appearances over eight games (six starts). On Tuesday, he had two hits and drove in four, narrowly being deprived of a fifth when Tony Gwynn was thrown out at the plate.
Despite that, while this will certainly disappoint a lot of fans who have tickets for the final homestand of the year, this is essentially good news. It’s good news for Ethier because if the knee is really that troublesome – and based on his performance this year, the last week aside, it has been – then it’s for the best that he stop pounding it and go see what’s wrong. It’s good news for the Dodgers because it gives them absolutely no excuse to not play Sands every single day, which is basically the most important thing we’re going to get out of September, other than cheering for Kemp and Clayton Kershaw to win their awards. And, while it’s too soon to really say this for sure, it might just be good for the club in the negotiating room, if a lousy season and injury concerns help keep Ethier’s cost down in arbitration.
That’s a conversation for another time, however. Right now, the most important thing is finding out what’s wrong with him and getting him back to the player he once was in order to help the offense in 2012. If a side benefit of that is giving Sands all the time he needs to prove himself, all the better.
(By the way, the weather forecast for Washington, DC, is once again hilariously bad today. If you think we got our fill of weather-related shenanigans yesterday, think again.)