Braves rookie Johan Camargo suffers strange injury running on field

Brett Davis

Standout rookie Johan Camargo suffered perhaps the strangest injury of the 2017 season while taking the field before Tuesday night’s game against the Philadelphia Phillies.

The 23-year-old Atlanta Braves infielder ran out of the dugout and, in his typical pregame ritual, bent down the grab some dirt before entering the field of play and started grabbing his right leg after suffering an injury. Team trainer Jim Lovell immediately started examining Camargo’s right knee. Camargo needed to be helped off the field by Lovell and third-base coach Ron Washington.

“What a way to start a day,” Braves manager Brian Snitker said after the game. “I just saw him sitting there in a pile, pretty much. I just thought maybe he tripped. I’ve seen guys trip before, but I’ve never seen a guy come out of a game for that.”

After undergoing an MRI, the team announced that Camargo suffered no ligament damage and diagnosed him with a bone bruise in his right knee. He will spend time on the disabled list and is expected to miss a couple weeks.

“When you look at it, I was thinking a lot worse,” Snitker said. “I’m thinking the kid’s probably going to be done for the year. They said they heard a pop. I’m thinking he tore something (and needed) surgery. But they did the MRI and all and they said it’s just a bone bruise.”

Camargo has been the organization’s biggest surprise this season. A defense-first infielder throughout his minor-league career, the Panamanian product’s bat took off this summer, hitting .292/.327/.454 with three home runs in 63 games. His emergence in a crowded infield led to Atlanta demoting its former top prospect, struggling infielder Dansby Swanson, to Triple-A Gwinnett to clear space in a crowded infield.

Swanson appears to be on his way back to Atlanta.

After opening his night at Triple-A Gwinnett with an RBI double, Swanson was removed in the middle of the game directly after news of Camargo’s injury first broke.