Mariners Pull Kyle Lewis From Arizona Fall League

The Mariners have removed top prospect Kyle Lewis from the Arizona Fall League due to continued complications from his right knee injury.

Lewis tore his ACL, medial and lateral meniscus in a grisly home-plate collision in July 2016 and missed nearly a year before returning with high Class A Modesto this summer. He was assigned to the Fall League but played only two games with Peoria before being sidelined with swelling and soreness in his right patellar tendon.

“I guess you’d classify it as a setback but it’s more of continuing issues,” Mariners farm director Andy McKay said. “It’s more of ‘the knee needs more time’ type of thing. He’s shown he can go out and play and his ability level is very unique. Basically it comes down to the patellar tendon and so we pulled him out and are starting a new process that will have him ready for Opening Day.”

Lewis was Baseball America’s College Player of the Year in 2016 and the 11th overall draft pick that year. He mostly served as the designated hitter upon his return from injury at Modesto but progressively improved his knee and started eight of the Nuts final 12 games in center field. He followed by hitting .458 in the postseason while starting all six of Modesto’s playoff games in center.

His assignment to the Fall League was expected to be a continuation of that progress. Lewis went 3-for-4 with two doubles in his AFL first game on Oct. 23, went 0-for-4 the following day and did not play again.

“There was not a specific moment (that caused the swelling),” McKay said. “Slowing down, coming to catch a sinking liner, having to stop suddenly can flare it up.”

Lewis is scheduled for a regimen of rest and rehab. The Mariners expect him to be ready for spring training.

“We knew when the injury happened this was a real, real serious injury,” McKay said. “We feel good with the progress overall he’s made. We’ve isolated it to one specific issue. Structurally his knee is 100 percent healed. So those are real positives.”

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