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Diamondbacks’ Nick Ahmed to miss 6-8 weeks after hand surgery

The Diamondbacks’ starting shortstop will miss extensive time with a hand injury.

MLB: St. Louis Cardinals at Arizona Diamondbacks Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

The Diamondbacks announced on Wednesday evening that shortstop Nick Ahmed will miss 6-8 weeks after undergoing right hand surgery.

Ahmed, one of the best defensive shortstops in the majors, exited in the eighth inning of Tuesday night’s Diamondbacks win over the Cardinals after being hit on the hand by a 99-m.p.h. Trevor Rosenthal fastball.

Ahmed, 26, was having a career offensive year for the D-Backs, hitting .251/.298/.419 with six homers in 178 plate appearances. He had started 41 of Arizona’s 78 games at shortstop.

Luckily for the Diamondbacks, they arguably have the best shortstop depth in the majors and should be in a good position to deal with Ahmed’s loss. Chris Owings was the D-Backs’ Opening Day shortstop and has started 37 games at the position this year, in addition to eight games at second base and 20 in right field. While Ahmed’s injury will limit Owings’ ability to move around and be a versatile spark plug, he’s actually an offensive upgrade over Ahmed, as he’s hitting .292/.328/.468 with nine homers in 289 plate appearances.

To replace Ahmed on the roster, Arizona recalled Ketel Marte, who was the Seattle Mariners’ primary starting shortstop last season. Marte, 23, has been raking in Triple-A this year, posting a .338/.391/.514 slash line with six homers in 338 plate appearances. He’ll likely get starts at short when Owings shifts around the diamond or needs a day off.