OK, maybe the Mets aren't going to fire Howard Johnson

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When we all woke up this morning the buzz was that the Mets were poised to fire hitting coach Howard Johnson. Now Andy Martino of the Daily News hears from his sources that if they Mets were really going to can HoJo, they would have done it already.

I stand by my belief that firing a hitting coach over a team’s won-loss record is about as useful as a rain dance or rubbing a rabbit’s foot. Heck, maybe less useful, because at least rain dances and rubbing a rabbit’s foot are acts borne of some positive impulse that could at least give everyone involved some peace of mind.

Not that I’m alone in this. Indeed, I saw a number of people in the sporting press and the greater Mets Kingdom express similar sentiments today. Some even said that if Omar Minaya were to fire Johnson that he’d be doing so to distract from the more pressing need of firing Jerry Manuel or maybe even taking the fall himself.  Part of me wonders if he saw some of that himself today and changes his mind.

If so, you owe all of us bloggers a beer, Johnson.

Adam Eaton sustains leg injury after tripping over first base

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Nationals’ outfielder Adam Eaton was carried off the field after stumbling over first base on Friday night. In the ninth inning of the Nationals’ 7-5 loss to the Mets, Eaton appeared to catch his ankle on the bag as he ran out an infield single, suffering a leg injury on the fall. He was unable to put pressure on his left leg after the play and required assistance by two of the Nationals’ athletic trainers as he exited the field.

Eaton is scheduled to undergo an MRI on Saturday, but Nationals’ manager Dusty Baker told reporters that it “doesn’t look too good.” It’s the first significant leg injury the outfielder has sustained since 2014, when he went on the 15-day disabled list with a hamstring strain. He’ll likely be replaced by Michael Taylor in center field for the next couple of games, though that could be a temporary fix as the Nationals seek a better solution during Eaton’s recovery process.

Madison Bumgarner likely sidelined through the All-Star break

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It’s been just over a week since Giants’ left-hander Madison Bumgarner got a serious scare after a nasty dirt bike accident. He escaped with bruised ribs and a Grade 2 strain of his left shoulder AC joint, but there was some speculation that the injuries would cause a significant, if not permanent, setback in the southpaw’s career. Thankfully, things aren’t looking quite so bleak today. Not only will Bumgarner not require surgery, but he could return as soon as the week following the All-Star break, the Giants said Friday.

Of course, that timeline is wholly dependent on how smoothly the recovery process goes, so nothing is set in stone yet. NBC Sports Bay Area’s Alex Pavlovic estimates 2-3 months of rest and rehab, including “two months before he can get back on the mound and then another three to four weeks of throwing and rehab starts before he’s big league-ready.” It’s a long and laborious schedule, but still looks much better than any surgical alternative.

Prior to the accident, Bumgarner was working on a solid start to the 2017 season. He maintained a 3.00 ERA, 1.3 BB/9 and 9.3 SO/9 through 27 innings with the club, though his average 1.75 runs of support per start fed into an 0-3 record.