Surge Atlanta Braves loses star second baseman Ozzie Albies in the fifth inning with a broken left foot

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Atlanta Braves second baseman Ozzie Albies walked out of Monday’s 9-5 win over the Washington Nationals in the fifth inning after breaking his left foot, the team said.

Albies suffered the injury in the batter’s box on a swing and as the ball left the bat the veteran hobbled a step down the first baseline before falling to the ground in pain.

He sat up and immediately looked at the injured foot. After making his way onto the dugout, he hopped down the stairs and into the Braves’ clubhouse on his right foot. He was replaced at second base by veteran backup Orlando Arcia.

Albies was 0-2 with one run scored and one walk at the time of injury. Arcia singled in his first at-bat.

“Hate it for Ozzie. Hate it for us,” said Braves manager Brian Snitker, who didn’t know how long Albies would be sidelined. “He’ll be fine. He is young, he will heal quickly. Like I said, I hate it for the boy because he loves to play baseball and is such a big part of our club. It is a chance to do something good for someone else.”

The injury comes as the defending World Series champion recovers from a slow start. With Monday’s win, Atlanta now owns a 12-game winning streak that has propelled the Braves into second place in the National League East, five games behind the New York Mets.

“It’s hard to put into words,” shortstop Dansby Swanson said of Albie’s injury in his on-pitch interview after the game. “He’s like my little brother, we’ve been playing together for six years now, we’ve been through a lot together, a lot of ups and a lot of downs. There isn’t a better person out there. Obviously we are the Thinking of Him.

“At the end of the day, these things happen in sport and we’re going to keep growing and getting better.”

Before the series opener against Washington, Albies had 240 at-bats, 8 homers and 33 RBIs. He fought his way out of goal like the team after last November’s World Series title, but Albies increased his batting average to .246 and had three stolen bases, mostly hitting from the #6 hole.

Albies, 25, is in his fifth major league season, winning a Silver Slugger Award in both 2019 and 2021. Albies, who was signed until 2025, led the National League as an assist last season and has made two All-Star Game appearances.

The first inning of Monday’s game was delayed nearly 90 minutes because of rain in Washington. After the delay, the Nationals switched starting pitchers, giving reliever Erasmo Ramirez a point start over Josiah Gray. In the ninth inning, the Nationals removed star outfielder Juan Soto before his turn in the lineup after he slipped and caught his knee on the corner of the dugout bench. Ehire Adrianza scored for Soto and landed.

“He said he could go out there [in the field for the ninth], but he had a pretty good limp,” Nationals manager Dave Martinez said of Soto. “He came in and said he was starting to get really sore so I didn’t want to risk it and we’ll see how he feels tomorrow.”

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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