Royce Lewis injury history and updates

Here's every injury Royce Lewis has suffered in his short MLB career with the Minnesota Twins.

Division Series - Houston Astros v Minnesota Twins - Game Four
Division Series - Houston Astros v Minnesota Twins - Game Four / David Berding/GettyImages

It seems like Minnesota Twins fans are cursed to endure endless injuries to star players.

From Byron Buxton to Carlos Correa, the Twins have needed to navigate injuries to core players for most of this decade and the bug goes back further than that. When it bites, it typically draws proverbial blood, which is something Royce Lewis is no stranger to.

Lewis was drafted with the No. 1 overall pick back in 2017 and seemed to be on a trajectory to become the next great Twins prospect to flourish at the MLB level. When he eventually made his mark in 2023 it felt like he had been around for ages, but he did so at the age of 24 despite having already been around the team for seven years.

His career has been a thrill to watch, but it's been a stop-and-go journey due to the various injuries he's battled in the short amount of time he's been in the picture. From a pair of ACL tears to a quad injury on Opening Day in 2024, Lewis has been both one of the Twins' most important players but one who never seems to be healthy for long stretches of the season.

Royce Lewis injury history

February 2021: Torn ACL

Time Missed: 186 games

This was the first of two ACL tears Lewis dealt with early in his career. It happened in Feburary 2021, which wiped out his entire season plus the first 26 games of 2022.

No matter which way you look at this injury it's a devestating one. The context of Lewis tearing his ACL again over a year later colors this one in even darker shades of red, but even at the time it was seen as a brutal setback.

Lewis was carrying the weight of being the Next Guy; a former No. 1 overall pick, Lewis was being viewed int he same light as Joe Mauer and Byron Buxton as this generation's great Twins player. He was living up to the hype in the minors and seemed to be showing everything we wanted to see from a guy who was going to be an important piece of the core.

That's why his ACL injury in February was so tough to handle, as it set him back and meant we'd have to wait at least a year to see him deliever on the promise he'd been showing.

May 2022: Torn ACL

Time Missed: 189 games

Just 12 games after making his triumphant debut -- which doubled as a return from that first injury injury -- Lewis tore his ACL again. Making matters worse, it was the same exact ACL he had torn over a year prior, which at this point caused Twins fans to wonder if the top prospect in the organization would ever catch a break and be able to have the career we all wanted him to have.

Collectively this second ACL tear wiped out 189 games for Lewis, as he missed the remainder of the 2022 season as well as the first 53 games of the 2023 season. He eventually returned, again, at the end of May last year in what was an even more triumphant return than the first time he bounced back from an ACL injury.

This time around, Lewis stuck. Not only did he go on to have an incredible rookie season but he made his presence known right away. He made his re-debut against the Houston Astros at time when the Twins offense had started to slump. In his first game, Lewis single handidly lifted Minnesota to a win and set up a season that had him beginning the next one with experts wondering if he was a dark horse MVP candidate.

July 2023: Oblique strain

Time Missed: 36 games

We had about a month of Lewis lighting things up before he was bitten by the injury bug again. Luckily this time it had nothing to do with his ACL, rather an oblique strain forced him to hit the IL and miss 36 games.

Lewis didn't return to the Twin until August 15th, and picked right back up where he left off. He would end up finishing the month off by hitting a three grand slams in the span of 18 days while continuing to lift Minnesota's offense.

September 2023: Right hamstring strain (10-day IL)

Time Missed: 11 games

Just over a month after he returned from the IL, Lewis found his way back on it. This time it was a right hamstring injury that forced him out of action, and it eventually ended his rookie season since he didn't play another regular season game the rest of the way.

In typical Lewis fashion, though, we did see him again and it was electric.

Lewis missed the remainder of the regular season but made his return for the AL Wild Card game in October. In the first game of the series, he launched back-to-back home runs in his first two at-bats and helped lead the Twins to their first postseason win since 2004.

March 2024: Right quad strain

Time Missed: TBD (At least one month)

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