Xavier Nady is going to be out for a while

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Remeber last year when the Pirates traded Xavier Nady and Damaso Marte
to the Yankees in exchange for Jose Tabata, Dan McCutchen, Jeff
Karstens and Ross Ohlendorf? Remember how lots of people thought the
Yankees won that trade? About how it was highway robbery of the Pirates
that Cashman didn’t throw in Melky or Kennedy or anyone like that?
Well, what a difference 11 months make:

After the Yankees’ second offensive explosion in row, they announced
that another veteran hitter would not be joining them anytime soon.
Outfielder Xavier Nady, who had tried to avoid surgery for the elbow
injury he sustained in April, pulled himself from a game with Class AAA
Scranton/Wilkes-Barre after a painful throw.

“It’s the thing you try to avoid,” said General Manager Brian
Cashman, who spoke to Scranton Manager Dave Miley. “It could be the
worst-case scenario.”

And of course Damaso Marte has been out for two months too. Meanwhile,
Russ Ohlendorf gave up two runs in seven innings yesterday and has been
a fairly serviceable fourth/fifth starter type. This is not to say that
the Pirates made out like bandits or anything — Tabata is going
nowhere right now and Karstens is roster filler at best — but at least
they’re playing.

The point, I guess, is that it’s pretty hard to judge most trades
the moment they happen. The Yankees would probably like to take this
one back at this point, and no one really felt that way last year.

Report: Braves extend Kurt Suzuki

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Kurt Suzuki will wear a Braves’ uniform through the 2018 season after signing a one-year, $3.5 million extension with the club on Saturday, per The Athletic’s Ken Rosenthal. Rosenthal adds that the two had been in talks for weeks and Suzuki made it clear that he wanted to remain in Atlanta for the foreseeable future. The team has yet to announce the extension.

Suzuki, 33, initially signed a one-year contract with the Braves back in January. The veteran backstop stepped into a backup role behind starting catcher Tyler Flowers, but still found a way to impress at the plate with a .271/.343/.525 batting line, career-best 18 home runs and an .868 OPS through 287 PA. According to FanGraphs, Suzuki’s 2.2 fWAR makes 2017 his most valuable season since his run with the 2009 Athletics.

It’s a prudent move for the Braves, who would have lost one of their most dynamic second-half hitters to the free agent market this offseason. Entering Saturday, Suzuki is second only to Freddie Freeman with 11 homers and 1.4 fWAR since the All-Star break. His stunning comeback also confirmed the team’s decision to look outside the organization for a backup catcher, rather than turning to fellow veteran Anthony Recker behind the plate.

“On a personal level, this season exceeded my expectations,” Suzuki told reporters on Wednesday. “It’s just one of those things I can’t explain. I put a lot of work in and really didn’t have a job until late January. I got an opportunity here and took advantage of it. It was definitely a good fit.”

Mikie Mahtook is likely done for the season

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Tigers’ outfielder Mikie Mahtook is unlikely to play again this season, club manager Brad Ausmus announced Saturday. Mahtook was diagnosed with a Grade 2 left groin strain following Friday’s series opener against the Twins, when he appeared to injure himself after chasing down Byron Buxton‘s two-RBI double in the fourth.

This is the second time Mahtook has sustained a groin injury over the past month. The 27-year-old exited Friday’s game with a .276/.330/.457 batting line, 12 home runs and a .787 OPS through 379 plate appearances with the team.

With the Tigers out of contention, there’s no reason to trot out Mahtook for the remaining eight games of the regular season. The club has yet to specify a timetable for his return, but there’s no reason to believe he won’t be in fine shape to compete for a starting role next spring.