Braves' All-Star catcher cautiously working his way back to the diamond

Atlanta's star catcher is slowly starting to work towards returning to action.
Arizona Diamondbacks v Atlanta Braves
Arizona Diamondbacks v Atlanta Braves / Matthew Grimes Jr./Atlanta Braves/GettyImages

Losing your star players is never easy, especially not when it happens two days into the season. However, that is exactly what happened when the Atlanta Braves learned they'd be without Sean Murphy after just two games. The team has since lost Spencer Strider for the season and most recently Ozzie Albies to a fractured big toe, landing him on the 10-day IL.

The All-Star catcher suffered a strained left oblique that placed him on the 10-day IL. Luckily, the Braves have a talented tandem catching core and Travis d'Arnaud picked up the daily duties without issue. Chadwick Tromp has been really great on the days TDA gets a break as well.

Atlanta will be very careful with rushing him back to the field but it seems he is slowly beginning to get the process started as he engaged in some light throwing activity on the field before game one of the Braves series in Houston.

Braves insider David O'Brien reported this and stated Murphy is not doing any running yet. However, the catcher confirmed he is "Fast walking" and using the "StairMaster. Making progress." This is encouraging to see he can at least do those activities without issue but there's no need to rush things.

As to why the team brought Murphy on the road trip instead of having him stay home and do the rehab there, the team highly values his input during daily strategy meetings. Murphy meets with d'Arnaud and catching coach Sal Fasano before each game to make a plan for how they will handle the opposition that day.

So, while Murphy's bat and glove are super important, the Braves clearly value his baseball IQ just as much. Having his input on opposing batters is valuable and helps the team at the end of the day. The Braves are very lucky to have a guy like that on their side.

While this is encouraging to hear, it doesn't seem like he is going to be back until sometime in May at this point. If he were to do any normal baseball activities right now (hitting, throwing, blocking the plate) would place heavy stress on the oblique so the team wants it fully healed before even trying to get him back out there.

Murphy understands this as he points out "That's why it takes so long to heal, because that muscle can never actually like, stop. You need it, like, every time you breathe." So, fans can rest easy knowing Sean is going to do all he can to be 100% healthy before returning to action. It would do Atlanta no good to get him back just to lose him again. He is important to this team achieving their goal of a World Series in 2024.

Whenever the Braves provide a clear timetable for return, we will pass that news along to you.

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