Chipper Jones to test knee in batting practice Tuesday

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Chipper Jones will test his ailing right knee in batting practice tomorrow, reports Carroll Rogers of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

Jones was diagnosed with a torn meniscus yesterday and received a pair of cortisone shots. The veteran third baseman will undergo arthroscopic surgery if the knee doesn’t respond to the injections, which would mean roughly 2-3 weeks of recovery time.

“We’re just going to play it by ear from here on out,” said Jones, who had surgery for an ACL tear on his left knee last August. “If I have any more pain or it keeps me out of any more ball games, go clean it out. And if the injection works and I’m able to continue to play through it, I will.”

Jones, 39, is batting .275/.366/.465 with four home runs and 27 RBI over his first 164 plate appearances this season. While the Braves would surely miss his presence in the lineup if he required an extended absence, Martin Prado has made a couple fantastic defensive plays filling in for him at third base tonight, including this one. Somehow, I don’t think Larry — or most third basemen in baseball, for that matter — could pull that off.

Mike Trout has a torn thumb ligament, could require surgery

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Yesterday Mike Trout left the Marlins-Angels game after hurting his thumb while sliding head first into second base. After the game the Angels talked about it as if it were just a sprain. Trout had an MRI today, however, and the diagnosis is far worse: he has a torn thumb ligament.

While a treatment option has not yet been chosen, surgery is a possibility. A certainty is that he’ll miss, at the very least, several weeks of play. He has been placed on the disabled list for the first time in his career.

Trout, the reigning AL MVP and, without question, the best player in baseball, is batting .337/.461/.742 with 16 home runs, 36 RBI, 36 runs scored, and 10 stolen bases in 206 plate appearances this season. Even with the one of the weaker supporting casts in baseball, Trout had the Angels near .500 and in at least arguable contention in the AL West.

Without him, they are likely sunk. Without him, baseball is worse off.

Basebrawl! Harper, Strickland punch away, Nats-Giants fight

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SAN FRANCISCO — Nationals slugger Bryce Harper and San Francisco reliever Hunter Strickland both landed punches to the head during a wild brawl that erupted Monday after a hit by pitch.

Harper was hit in the right hip by Strickland’s 98 mph fastball in the eighth inning with Washington ahead 2-0.

Harper pointed the bat toward Strickland, charged the mound and fired his batting helmet wide of the pitcher. They started to swing away and they each connected as the benches and bullpens emptied.

At least two Giants players forcefully dragged Strickland from the middle of the brawl all the way into the dugout. Harper and Strickland were both ejected.

In the 2014 NL Division Series, Harper hit two home runs off Strickland. After the star’s second shot, in Game 4, he stared at Strickland as he rounded the bases.