As was mentioned in the recaps this morning, Chipper Jones hurt his oblique in yesterday’s loss to the Cubs. He was originally listed as day-to-day, but Mark Bowman of MLB.com reports that he got a cortisone shot today and because of whatever voodoo accompanies cortisone shots he’s out until at least Monday, and may miss some more time.
My guess is that he’ll once again begin pursuing Cal Ripken’s Iron Man title on Wednesday of next week, due to the no-travel offday Tuesday which would give him some more time to heal. Also worth noting is that between Eric Hinske, Troy Glaus Martin Prado and Omar Infante, the Braves are rotten with guys who can at least pretend to play a little third base if need be. My guess is that they’ll either plug Infante directly at third or else play Infante at second and move Prado over.
While all of this may be distressing to some Braves fans, David O’Brien reminded us this morning that the team went 9-1 when Chipper missed ten games last season. Fact is, the offense doesn’t depend on him the way it used to and the Braves will get by without him for a few days.
Free agent right-hander Tim Lincecum isn’t ready to hang up his cleats just yet. At least, that’s the word from Lincecum’s agent, Rick Thurman, who says the 32-year-old is still “throwing and getting ready for the season” (via Andrew Baggarly of the San Jose Mercury News).
Lincecum may not be ready to enter retirement, but another quote from Thurman suggests that he’ll be picky about where he pitches next. He doesn’t appear open to pitching overseas, and despite not having a contract for 2017 (or even any serious suitors), the right-hander is set on pitching in the big leagues this year. Whether or not he’s willing to take a bullpen role to do so remains to be seen.
While Baggarly predicts some interest in the veteran righty, there’s not much in Lincecum’s recent history to inspire faith in him as a starter, or even a reliever. He picked up a one-year, $2.5 million contract with the Angels following his hip surgery in 2015, and went 2-6 in 2016 with a 9.16 ERA, 5.4 BB/9 and 7.5 SO/9 over 38 1/3 innings. At this point, a minor league contract seems like the surest path back to major league success, though he’s unlikely to find an open spot on the Giants’ or Angels’ rosters anytime soon.
Free agent right-hander Jeff Manship has reportedly signed with the NC Dinos of the Korea Baseball Organization, according to FanRag Sports’ Jon Heyman. The righty was non-tendered by the Indians in December.
Manship, 32, completed his second season with Cleveland in 2016. He delivered a 3.12 ERA, 4.6 BB/9 and 7.5 SO/9 rate over 43 1/3 innings, a slight decline after posting an 0.92 ERA with the club the year before. During eight years in the major leagues, Manship carries a 4.82 career ERA, 3.6 BB/9 and 6.4 SO/9 in multiple stints with the Twins, Rockies, Phillies and Indians.
The right-hander will be joined by fellow MLB transplants Eric Hacker and Xavier Scruggs, each of whom took one-year deals with the Dinos last month. Steve Adams of MLB Trade Rumors notes that each KBO team is allowed up to three foreign players, so Manship will round out the trio when he joins the roster. Any salary terms have yet to be disclosed.