UPDATE: Mark Sheldon of MLB.com reports that Cozart was diagnosed with a hyperextended left elbow and that X-rays came back negative. It’s not clear when he’ll be able to return to the lineup, but it sounds like the Reds may have dodged a bullet here.
5:45 PM: Here’s some potentially bad news for the Reds as they attempt to hang around in the National League Central.
According to David O’Brien of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Reds rookie shortstop Zack Cozart left today’s game against the Braves with an apparent injury to his left arm following an awkward collision with Nate McLouth at second base in the fourth inning. No word on the severity of the injury yet, but Buster Olney of ESPN.com likened the play to how Albert Pujols injured his arm last month.
Cozart, 25, has been a breath of fresh air since supplanting Paul Janish and Edgar Renteria at shortstop earlier this month, batting .324 with two homers, three RBI and an .811 OPS over his first 37 major-league at-bats.
The White Sox have reportedly picked up first baseman Yonder Alonso from the Indians, according to Stadium. The return for Alonso is expected to be nothing more flashy than a “fringe prospect,” though the minutiae of the deal is still pending a formal announcement from both teams.
Alonso, 31, inked a two-year deal with the Indians during the 2017 offseason. His first campaign with the club yielded a modest .250/.317/.421 batting line, 23 home runs, .738 OPS and 0.7 fWAR in 574 PA. The real boon for the White Sox may not be a passable veteran bat, however, but something more intangible — like Alonso’s clout with his brother-in-law and highly-coveted free agent slugger, Manny Machado.
While Alonso’s 2018 output represented a significant decline from the career-best numbers he posted in 2017, he’s still a solid contributor at the plate and, more importantly, slated to remain under team control for the next two years with just $8 million owed in 2019 and a $9 million option in 2020. As MLB.com’s Anthony Castrovince notes, the $17 million the Indians just erased from their payroll should give them enough room to accommodate the contracts for right-handers Trevor Bauer and Corey Kluber — a bonus regardless of what they happen to get in the trade.