Hello again everyone from not-so-sunny Southeast Michigan, as we are battening down the hatches in advance of a line of severe thunderstorms that radar shows heading our way. Hopefully, no one will be injured up here, which is obviously more than the Braves can say about a whole handful of their key players. In what may become a regular feature if you guys like it and will take a moment to leave a comment saying that you do, “Soaking In The Boys Room” will take a look at the current status of all the rehabbing players as they soak in the whirlpool or other things on the way to recovery.
Heading up this week’s rather long list of “soakers” is Tommy Hanson. While I won’t rehash all that I said in this article published yesterday, I will say that the team is sticking by its position that Hanson will make his next start next week against the Giants, pitching on 9 days rest. Needless to say, everyone has their own opinion on this. There is a large constituency that says that Hanson is a ticking time-bomb with his unorthodox delivery, and that his numbers indicate the fuse may already be lit. All I can say is that I have never seem a delivery quite like his, but I don’t see any violent action that is an immediate red flag. The numbers I point out in my post do look close to a red flag to me, though. I say the team needs to be very careful in their usage of Hanson, even sacrificing a portion of the wild card lead to help ensure he’s healthy for the postseason.
Next up is Peter Moylan. Moylan could potentially be the key RH relief piece the team needs to avoid having the “Big 3″ relievers to collapse from overuse. He’s been throwing off a mound and has now begun throwing breaking pitches. Keep in mind that Moylan is recovering from back surgery, not arm surgery. This should be a quicker process than with almost any arm injury. It would seem to me that simulated games and a rehab schedule are next up, and quickly. I haven’t seen anyone commit to a return date yet, though. Purely guessing, I’d say the first week in September, when rosters are expanded. Stay tuned!
Staying with pitching, Jair Jurrjens threw a bullpen session on Friday with no reports of any complications. While no specific timeline has been announced, I would think that he would be ready to return somewhere around the 15 days he’s on the DL, meaning around August 16th or so, depending on how the rotation falls in place. (Jurrjens was put on the DL on August 1st with discomfort in his right knee). This would assume that there are no issues with the knee during the process.
Moving over to the offensive side of the ledger, the really missing piece in the Braves offense is Brian McCann. The great news is that Brian has started his rehab stint with Gwinnett, going 1-3 as their DH last night. The word on the street is that he will start at catcher for Gwinnett today. If no problems crop up with his previously strained oblique (or anything else, I guess!), there’s a real chance he could be activated on Sunday. I personally think it will be Monday at the earliest, to avoid catching him in back-to-back games for a little longer; we’ll see, I guess.
That’s it for now, as I don’t think it’s even remotely possible that Nate McLouth will wear a Braves uniform again.
Don’t forget to let us know what you think of the “Soaking In The Boys Room” concept!