Escobar placed on the 15-day DL
While attempting to build off the momentum created by this past weekend’s sweep of the Astros, the Braves will spend the entirety of their current nine-game road trip without Yunel Escobar.
With Escobar’s strained left groin still ailing, the Braves have placed the 27-year-old shortstop on the 15-day disabled list and filled his roster spot by promoting Brandon Hicks, a talented defensive player whose contract was purchased from Triple-A Gwinnett on Tuesday.
Escobar, who is hitting .217 with eight RBIs, has been sidelined since straining his groin on Thursday. In his absence, Omar Infante will continue handling the starting shortstop duties that he filled during this past weekend’s series against the Astros.
While Escobar could be ready to play at some point this weekend, the Braves didn’t want to spend more time playing one man short. The talented shortstop will be eligible to come off the disabled list on May 15.
Braves manager Bobby Cox has said over the course of the past two years that Hicks is ready to serve as a Major League shortstop from a defensive perspective. But the 24-year-old infielder’s offensive struggles have slowed his rise toward gaining a permanent spot on the Major League roster.
While playing 128 games for Double-A Mississippi last year, Hicks hit .237 with 10 homers and 131 strikeouts. He has hit .179 with one homer and 21 strikeouts in 84 at-bats with Gwinnett this year.
Hicks, who has never previously been on a Major League roster, traveled with the club to Washington D.C. and will be available for Tuesday night’s series opener against the Nationals.