MIAMI — Injuries in pro sports usually happen during the game, but a celebration after a World Baseball Classic win had one player being taken from the field in a wheelchair.
New York Mets star closer Edwin Díaz hurt his right knee Wednesday night after Puerto Rico knocked the Dominican Republic team from the classic, The Associated Press reported.
Díaz had pitched a perfect ninth inning, beating the Dominican Republic team 5-2.
After the game, the Puerto Rico team was jumping in a group in the infield when Díaz fell, grasping his right leg.
He was carried a few feet then tried to walk but was not able to put weight on the leg. He was taken from the field in a wheelchair, tears streaming, The New York Times and the AP reported.
“It’s awful. I know what it meant to him to be in that situation for Puerto Rico, and I know what type of kid he is. I know how hard he works. I know how much he cares and what he means to Puerto Rico and to the Mets,” Mets teammate Adam Ottavino and Team USA reliever said, according to Sports Illustrated.
Díaz will have imaging on the knee on Thursday and the Mets will release an update “when appropriate,” The New York Times reported.
Some are worried that the Mets star, who is considered the best closer in the MLB with a 100 mph fastball, will be off the field for a long time because of the injury, ESPN reported.
Díaz re-signed with the Mets before being put on the market as a free agent for five years and $102 million, according to ESPN.
The team from Puerto Rico was runner-up in the past two World Baseball Classic series in 2013 and 2017 and played last night’s game in front of a crowd of 36,025 fans, the Times reported.
The World Baseball Classic is played every four years during the last two weeks of Major League Baseball’s spring training.
His brother, Alexis Díaz, who plays for Cincinnati, also was in tears as Edwin Díaz was removed from the field, the AP reported. Sports Illustrated reported that the game was the first time the Díaz brothers played together.