The composition of the Braves’ postseason rotation could go a variety of ways depending upon how much progress Tommy Hanson and Jair Jurrjens make over the next three weeks.
While Hanson is currently sidelined with a small undersurface rotator cuff tear in his right shoulder, it sounds like he’s a lot closer to returning than Jurrjens. According to David O’Brien of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Hanson reported no discomfort after throwing from a distance of 120 feet Monday. He is at least one week away from a rehab start, but hopes to make one or two starts with the Braves before the regular season comes to a close.
The news isn’t nearly as rosy for Jurrjens. While Dr. Richard Steadman in Colorado confirmed the original diagnosis of a bone bruise in his right knee and ruled out any structural damage, the right-hander was advised to not throw off a mound for two weeks. The Braves haven’t ruled him out, but this would seem to give him little time to prepare in order to be a part of the NLDS roster. Jurrjens had arthroscopic surgery on the same knee last October and missed the playoffs.
The Braves currently have Tim Hudson, Derek Lowe and Brandon Beachy as locks for the postseason rotation and would likely fill the fourth spot with rookie left-hander Mike Minor if Jurrjens and Hanson are unable to return.
The Mets entered Sunday night’s game against the Pirates with a disappointing 20-27 record. While the club has dealt with a litany of injuries, manager Terry Collins has also drawn criticism for in-game decision-making, particularly regarding his decision-making.
Owner Fred Wilpon is still Collins’ strongest supporter, however, Newsday’s Marc Carig reports. As a result, the team is unlikely to make a managerial change anytime soon. If the Mets continue to struggle, though, ownership may feel pressured to make a change.
Collins became the longest-tenured manager in Mets history last week. Collins managed the Mets to a 77-85 record in 2011 and has overall helped the club go 501-518, winning the NL Pennant in 2015. He is not signed to a contract beyond this season.
Twins first baseman Joe Mauer had a game for the record books on Sunday against the Rays. He finished 4-for-5 with an RBI double, a solo home run, two singles, and three walks in eight plate appearances. Unfortunately for him, the Twins still lost 8-6 in 15 innings.
ESPN’s Stats & Info notes that Mauer is the first Twin to reach base seven times in one game since Rod Carew in 1972 against the Brewers. The last player to reach base seven times in one game (without the aid of an error) was Giants shortstop Brandon Crawford on August 8 last season against the Marlins. The feat has only been accomplished seven times this decade, so about once a year.
After Sunday’s game, Mauer is batting .283/.363/.408 with three home runs, 18 RBI, and 23 runs scored in 171 plate appearances. Not too shabby.