Several players have bowed out of Tuesday’s All-Star Game this weekend due to injuries. Let’s recap:
Jose Reyes aggravated a right oblique injury on a long throw in Saturday’s game and will rest up instead of heading out to Anaheim, according to ESPN New York’s Adam Rubin. Reyes is hoping the All-Star break will allow him to avoid the disabled list. The Dodgers’ Rafael Furcal, batting .333/.373/.519, will replace him.
Justin Morneau suffered a mild concussion earlier this week and is still showing some minor symptoms. He bowed out Saturday, according to MLB.com’s Kelly Thesier, and Paul Konerko of the White Sox will replace him. Konerko has a .298/.379/.557 batting line, 20 home runs and 62 RBI through 289 at-bats.
Jason Heyward finally decided Saturday to remove himself from the National League All-Star roster, reports Dave O’Brien of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. He has been rehabbing a bruised thumb for a few weeks and remains on the disabled list. A replacement has not been named, but do-it-all Rockies outfielder Carlos Gonzalez seems like a nice fit. CarGo was on MLB’s “Final Vote” ballot, but lost out to Reds first baseman Joey Votto.
Rays manager Kevin Cash said that pitcher Nathan Eovaldi will join the starting rotation on Monday or Tuesday to face the Athletics, Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times reports. Eovaldi’s rehab outing with Triple-A Durham went well, even though he gave up eight runs in four innings.
Eovaldi, 28, hasn’t pitched in the majors since 2016 after undergoing Tommy John surgery. He had arthroscopic surgery in March to remove loose bodies in his elbow. It’s been a long road back. Knowing Eovaldi needed to recover from surgery, the Rays signed him to a one-year, $2 million contract in 2017 that included a $2 million club option for 2018 that they exercised last November.
When Eovaldi last pitched, he ranked among baseball’s hardest throwers, particularly among starters. He averaged 97.1 MPH on his fastball in 2016. Among starters who racked up at least 100 innings that season, only the Mets’ Noah Syndergaard had a higher average velocity (97.9 MPH). It remains to be seen if he still has that velocity after undergoing two procedures on his elbow.
The Rays will be glad to have Eovaldi back. The club has sustained injuries to Jake Faria, Yonny Chirinos, and Jose De Leon.