Heyward returns before Freeman
(Updated to show Jason Heyward has been activated):
As expected, Jason Heyward returned to the Braves’ lineup before Freddie Freeman. Heyward’s wish to return for Wednesday night’s game against the Mets was granted by the Braves.
When Heyward flew back from Indianapolis (where he spent the past two nights playing for Triple-A Gwinnett), he told a close friend that he was ready to return to full-time duties immediately. But he understood he would likely have to first take some swings and complete some running drills before the Braves opted to activate him from the disabled list.
Heyward had been on the disabled list since May 22 because of right shoulder inflammation. He battled right shoulder discomfort for more than two months before finally realizing some relief while rehabbing at the Braves’ Spring Training complex in Lake Buena Vista, Fla.
Heyward’s return at least compensates for what the Braves lose while Freeman rests the mild right oblique strain he suffered while taking swings in Turner Field’s indoor batting cage before last night’s game.
Freeman attempted to enter last night’s game in the late innings and he awoke this morning feeling he could return to the lineup tonight. This is the kind of passion you want from your young players. But it seems highly unlikely that the Braves will allow their rookie first baseman to return before they are certain he will not strain the oblique muscle and possibly miss a month.
“I’d rather mild stay mild [instead of] mild turn into something severe,” Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez said Tuesday night.