Under The Knife (cont.)
The influence of Chipper Jones is unquestionable. For the most part, Jones' presence has been a positive and one of the intangibles to consider for his Hall of Fame case. On the other hand, Jones' insistence on pushing his way back into the lineup from injury, bullying other players to do the same and ignoring the downsides of rushing back from injury has to factor in as well. It's the effect on players around him that's been most worrisome, costing some players significant time and keeping others from seeking out medical help early, which sometimes have made matters worse. It's impossible to know if that's the case with McCann, who was back in the Braves lineup on Tuesday.
Stanton has a mild oblique strain and the Marlins are being a bit cautious. Stanton's been known to exacerbate his injuries and has a difficult time moderating his workouts and activities. A couple days is nothing to the Marlins at this stage of the season, so don't be surprised if this one extends a little bit.
The Nats won't have Espinosa for the rest of the week ... probably. Espinosa injured his shoulder on a dive, much the same way that Adrian Beltre did. In much the same way, the injury is really more about what's going on inside. "Bruised" is an accurate description, but there's sure to be some microtrauma internally depending on how the shoulder moved inside the joint. There are some rumblings that Espinosa is pushing to come back early, but the Nats can be conservative given their division lead. This is the reverse of a situation going on in Missouri, where a college quarterback, James Franklin, passed on a painkiller injection and sat out a game. His coach questioned the decision, raising the possibility of possible HIPAA violations. Injections are no longer a matter of course, whether cortisone or otherwise, which is a good thing.
Lewis re-signed with the Rangers at a low base salary and a lot of incentives as he rehabs from elbow surgery. He should be back at some point next season, and depending on when that is and how he does, it could mean a solid payday. The contract also assures Lewis that he'll be able to have continuity in his rehab, sticking with the team and staff he knows and who know him. There's a value to Lewis, but there's also a value to the Rangers. They get "doing the right thing" points, something free agents notice and value when all things are equal.
Running into Prince Fielder isn't something I recommend. It seemed like Avila had escaped the worst of it, coming out with nothing more than a sore jaw. On Monday, Avila had a headache, which isn't necessarily a concussion symptom, but given the proximity to the event, the Tigers are playing it safe. They'll continue to monitor Avila, though it's unclear if he is still subject to the concussion protocols after having already passed them once. The assumption is that he could be back quickly, but concussions are unpredictable enough that I'm hanging a "TBD" up there.
Nice to see the big names getting on board with protective gear for pitchers ... The Yankees think they'll get Mark Teixeira back late next week. That will give him a few games to tune up his swing ... Aroldis Chapman is scheduled to throw a side session on Wednesday. The results will give the Reds a timeline on when he'll return to the pen ... Corey Hart remains day-to-day with his sore foot. The Brewers medical staff will do everything they can as long as the Brewers continue their surge ... The O's aren't sure if they'll get Jason Hammel back this season, but he's rehabbing with that hope in mind ... Catcher Carlos Gonzalez was a late scratch with a "tight" hamstring. The Rockies will be conservative here, so check him in daily leagues ... The Mets will resist the urge to accelerate R.A. Dickey's starts to give him more chances at 20 wins. It'd be an interesting and valuable experiment, however, assuming Dickey is relatively healthy and not over-fatigued at this stage of a long season ... Cameron Maybin is dealing with an Achilles injury. That's a tough one for a speed guy, so note this and watch to see that it's cleared up next spring ... Jim Thome could be back with the O's this weekend. Buck Showalter will find a way to use anything he can get at this stage ... Chris Young left with a strained quad, a recurrence of a previous injury. The D'backs may shut him down ... Great idea, and not just for the play-in ...
Buffalo native Patrick Kane scores in his return home as Blackhawks beat Sabres
Henrik Lundqvist wins his 300th game as Rangers blank Red Wings