July 17, 2012; Atlanta, GA, USA; Atlanta Braves catcher Brian McCann (16) shown on the on deck circle prior to his at bat against the San Francisco Giants during the second inning at Turner Field. The Giants defeated the Braves 9-0. Mandatory Credit: Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports

Braves' Brian McCann Aiming to Return

 

The Atlanta Braves catcher Brian McCann has been dealing with the rehab that comes with reconstructive shoulder surgery.  He has missed the start of the regular season and has set a date to which he wishes to return.  McCann played through the pain for much of last season in hopes he could fight off the discomfort and help the Braves extend their October baseball schedule.  Playing through the pain and playing at your highest ability were clearly in opposite directions as McCann’s stats for the 2012 season definitely didn’t represent the caliber player he is.

Jun 13, 2012; Atlanta, GA, USA; Atlanta Braves catcher Brian McCann (16) hits a two-run home run during the 5th inning against the New York Yankees at Turner Field. Mandatory Credit: Paul Abell-USA TODAY Sports

McCann started his rehab sessions last Friday with single-A affiliate Rome Braves.  He has appeared in four games and has 14 at bats with the team.  With those at bats he has five hits, three of which have been home runs and he’s included a double.  Brian has driving in seven runs already and scored four times.

After those games in Rome, McCann moves to Gwinnett to join the Braves triple-A team.  He is scheduled to play in four games with the Gwinnett Braves in hopes of being activated to the Braves lineup on Monday, May 6th.

McCann spoke to reporters about the injury ….

“The way I’m throwing is basically the same as before I got hurt,” McCann said. “The ball is coming out great. Now, it’s just going to be a matter of catching innings and getting up with the speed of the game.”

 

His return to the lineup should be great news to Braves fans as it seems we are struggling across the board for hits.  After Evan Gattis‘ hot start, he has cooled down.  I believe Fredi Gonzalez will keep Gattis in the majors as a backup catcher, outfielder, first baseman but I’m still on the fence.  If they send Gattis down to triple-A and he heats up again, then you bring him back up.  I don’t want to see that bat just sitting on the bench in hopes to get one at bat.

Brian’s return to the lineup is a good thing for the Braves as many believed earlier this season they would prefer Gattis.  Remember this guy is an All-Star catcher and still only 29-years-old.  If McCann can return to his abilities prior to his shoulder injury, other teams should watch out for the 2013 Atlanta Braves.

 

 

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