After missing seven weeks with a right elbow injury, J.J. Putz was activated from the disabled list this afternoon.
Putz originally appeared bound for surgery due to a strained flexor pronator and nerve irritation, but he didn’t have any setbacks after resuming his throwing program and made it through four minor league rehab appearances without any issues. It’s always possible that the symptoms will resurface, but he’s ready to rejoin the Diamondbacks’ bullpen.
Putz was struggling prior to the injury, posting a 4.26 ERA in 14 appearances while blowing four out of his first nine save chances. Heath Bell has been terrible recently, so Diamondbacks manager Kirk Gibson told Steve Gilbert of MLB.com that Putz will close in a potential save situation. However, he indicated to Nick Piecoro of the Arizona Republic yesterday that he’s unlikely to use him on back-to-back initially.
Following a dominant 5-1 win to clinch the National League Championship Series on Saturday night, the Dodgers named outfielder Cody Bellinger their MVP of the series.
Bellinger, 23, made noise when it mattered. Entering Saturday’s game, he carried a meager .190/.227/.238 batting line with just four hits and two RBI, but his hits in Games 4 and 7 became the difference-makers the Dodgers needed to keep pace with the Brewers and clinch the NL pennant. In Game 4, it was Bellinger’s 13th-inning base hit off of Junior Guerra that put the Dodgers over the top for the walk-off 2-1 win. The outfielder returned to put the finishing touches on the series with a go-ahead home run — his first of the postseason — in the second inning of Game 7.
Bellinger wrapped his second season in the Dodgers’ organization in 2018, slashing .260/.343/.470 with 25 home runs, an .814 OPS, and 3.6 fWAR across 632 PA and all 162 games. He’s the youngest Dodgers player to receive the award to date.