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Zack Cozart out for the year with shredded right knee

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Eugenio Suarez is coming up from Louisville to replace him.

David Kohl-USA TODAY Sports

This. Dang. Season.

We got just about the worst-possible news on Zack Cozart's knee. The Reds announced today that he'll have surgery on Monday to repair torn ligaments (that's ligament(S), plural) and a torn biceps tendon in his right knee. The estimated recovery time is about nine months, so odds are pretty good he won't even be ready for the beginning of next season.

To replace him, they brought up Eugenio Suarez from Louisville. They also brought up Chris Dominguez and sent down Pedro Villarreal, so the bullpen is back to the normal seven and the bench back to five.

This is really tough to take. The Reds have now lost their #2 starter, their starting catcher (kinda), and their starting shortstop to season-ending injuries. It's particularly tough for Cozart, because he was kinda having a career year. He was hitting a healthy .258/.310/.459 and had reestablished himself at the top of the batting order.

But not only is this terrible for this season, but it very well could compromise his career. As a right-handed hitter, the right knee is pretty important for loading power in his swing. And since his fringe power is about the best thing he has going for him at the plate, we could see him go from the career .375 slugger to what he did last season (a piddly .300). That's not really going to cut it, even with his glove. Nevermind what this horrible injury could do to his footwork in the field. If he loses a step and a bit of pop, he goes from good starting shortstop to decent middle-infield sub.

But that's getting way ahead of myself.

Right now, I'm sure Zack is in excruciating pain, both physically and existentially. Hang in there pal, and take care. God speed, Go-Cart.