Cole Hamels will throw a live batting practice session on Sunday, as the injury-plagued southpaw might yet still have a chance to factor into the 2020 season. Braves manager Brian Snitker told MLB.com’s Mark Bowman and other reporters that “We’re just looking to get through a couple live BPs and see how he is,” perhaps wisely not setting even a speculative timeline given that Hamels battled shoulder issues during Spring Training and is currently on the 45-day injured list recovering from left triceps tendinitis. Bowman speculates that Hamels likely won’t start pitching in simulated games until next weekend at the earliest, so the left-hander might not be able to join the Braves until roughly the last 7-10 days of the regular season.
It makes Hamels into a total wild card for Atlanta’s playoff drive, though with the club looking to have a good shot at the postseason, it isn’t out of the question that Hamels could be part of a playoff roster. Having a former World Series MVP coming out of the bullpen would be quite an interesting wrinkle for Atlanta, though Hamels has only worked as a reliever twice in his 439 career games in the regular season and postseason.
Some more injury situations from around baseball…
- Jorge Soler left tonight’s game due to what the Royals described as right oblique soreness. This is the second time in four days that Soler has exited a game due to such an injury, and perhaps on a related note, Soler is hitless over his last eight plate appearances. Soler has been a few steps behind his big 2019 numbers this season, though he is still hitting a solid .237/.333/.459 with eight homers over 159 PA.
- The Rays have been plagued by pitching injuries this season, and two more hurlers ran into potential issues on Saturday. Newly-acquired southpaw Cody Reed left tonight’s game during the eighth inning with an injury to his pinkie, though manager Kevin Cash told MLB.com’s Jose Toribio (Twitter links) that the problem doesn’t appear to be serious. The news isn’t as good for left-hander Shane McClanahan, as the prospect will miss around two weeks after suffering a hyper-extended left knee during a fielding play at the Rays’ alternate training site. The 31st overall pick of the 2018 draft, McClanahan got some top-100 prospect attention from Baseball Prospectus and Baseball American prior to the season, and there was some speculation Tampa Bay might give the 23-year-old his first taste of big league action sometime in September.
- Marlins outfielder Harold Ramirez had to be carted off the field tonight after suffering what the club described as a left hamstring strain. Ramirez suffered the injury while trying to beat out a grounder during the fifth inning of Miami’s 7-3 win over Tampa Bay. Playing in just his third game of the season, Ramirez was only activated off the injured list today, as he was one of the many Marlins players sidelined after positive COVID-19 tests.
- Yankees manager Aaron Boone provided reporters (including ESPN’s Marly Rivera) with updates on injured sluggers Giancarlo Stanton and Aaron Judge, saying that Judge will increase his baseball-activity work on Monday. Stanton, who Boone feels is “a little ahead of Judge” in terms of readiness, has already been taking part in baseball activities and is now running at 80 percent as he continues his recovery from a hamstring strain.