Colorado Rockies: David Dahl deserves your support, not criticism
By Kevin Henry
Colorado Rockies outfielder David Dahl has, to put it lightly, been very unlucky with his health so far in his Major and Minor League career. A Grade 4 laceration of his spleen that would eventually cause it to be removed. A stress reaction in his rib that caused him to not be a part of Colorado’s plans for all of last season. A broken foot that will sideline Dahl just when he was beginning to play a pivotal part in Colorado’s 2018 plans.
Dahl’s broken foot was suffered on Wednesday night in a loss to the San Francisco Giants at Coors Field. While at bat in the ninth inning, Dahl fouled a ball off the top of his foot, something he told Rox Pile and other reporters inside the Colorado clubhouse on Friday he had never done in his entire career.
"“I’ve never hit a ball off the top of my foot my whole career,” Dahl said. “I wear a shin guard because I’ve hit it off my shin before, but never off the top of my foot.”"
Unfortunately, things that seem uncommon are becoming common for the 24-year-old Dahl. A collision with the outfield wall resulted in his spleen injury. A rib condition that was supposed to heal by the end of spring training last season never improved enough to warrant a trip to Denver. Now, a first in the batter’s box results in an injury that is expected to put Dahl on the shelf for six to eight weeks.
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Make no mistake about it. Dahl has been unlucky, perhaps even snakebit early in his career. But for those on social media who are suggesting Dahl is like the oft-injured Troy Tulowitzki, fragile or even soft, you have a very bad and ill-advised take.
Dahl admitted to all of us listening to him at his locker yesterday afternoon that he needed the off day just to get his mind right again after being so frustrated with the injury in the hours following that Wednesday night at-bat. Not long after saying that, he pledged he would be back to help the Rockies down the stretch run this season and then posted those same sentiments on social media.
Suggesting Dahl is soft is no better than anyone suggesting Jon Gray is a head case after his latest outing. It’s unfair and it’s plain wrong.
As fans, are we disappointed to lose Dahl for an extended period of time? You bet. But let’s channel that frustration into support for Dahl during another time of healing.
Dahl mentioned to me in my last interview with him that he had seen the comments on social media. Trust me, he’s seeing them again in the days following his broken foot. Send some support his way through his social media accounts or even via the Instagram account of his golden retriever puppy, Rookie.
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And, for those trolls who can’t seem to find the room for that in their hearts or on their keyboards, find another outlet for your misplaced anger. Dahl doesn’t need it … or deserve it.