Chipper Jones’ final season isn’t getting off to the most promising start.
According to Mark Bowman of MLB.com, Jones will undergo arthroscopic surgery Monday to repair a torn meniscus in his left knee. Interestingly, Bowman hears that the 39-year-old third baseman suffered the injury running in the outfield Thursday just before he announced his intention to retire following the 2012 season.
Jones had surgery to repair a torn meniscus in his right knee last year and only missed around three weeks, so the hope is that he’ll be ready for the home opener against the Brewers on April 13.
Martin Prado is likely to fill in at third base during his absence while Eric Hinske and Matt Diaz figure to share playing time in left field.
Japanese League commissioner Atsushi Saito announced that Japan’s professional baseball season will open on June 19. Teams can being practice games on June 2. There will be no fans. Indeed, the league has not yet even begun to seriously discuss a plan for fans to begin attending games, though that may happen eventually.
The season will begin three months after its originally scheduled opening day of March 20. It will be 120 games long. Teams in each six-team league — the Central League and Pacific League — will play 24 games against each league opponent. There will be no interleague play and no all-star game.
The announcement came in the wake of a national state of emergency being lifted for both Tokyo and the island of Hokkaido. The rest of the country emerged from the state of emergency earlier this month. This will allow the Japanese leagues to follow leagues in South Korea and Taiwan which have been playing for several weeks.
In the United States, Major League Baseball is hoping to resume spring training in mid June before launching a shortened regular season in early July. That plan is contingent on the league and the players’ union coming to an agreement on both financial arrangements and safety protocols for a 2020 season. Negotiations on both are ongoing. Major League Baseball will, reportedly, make a formal proposal about player compensation tomorrow.