The Atlanta Braves cruised to their 60th win on the season tonight with a 6-1 win over the Tampa Bay Rays. However, it was not all good news on the night as A.J. Minter had to exit the game after just one batter due to injury.
You could see Minter pointing to his left pectoral area as he gave the ball to manager Brain Snitker and left the game. It was reported that the injury was reported after the game as pectoral tightness and is considered nothing to be extremely worried about.
Minter has been very good recently after a rough start to the season. On the year he has posted a 4.91 ERA, but that is partnered with a 2.84 FIP via Fangraphs. That alone shows some of the bad luck Minter has ran into this season.
Unfortunately, it seems the bad luck has hit Minter in the health department now. The silver lining in this is the arrival of the All-Star break so an IL stint doesn’t necessarily mean he will be missing a ton of games. Atlanta has shown a pattern in giving bullpen guys a much needed break whenever they have a small nagging discomfort.
With the depth of the Braves bullpen and the emergence of guys like Michael Tonkin and Ben Heller, this injury is much easier to navigate. Hopefully we get the return of king Jesse Chavez soon as well, who has been sidelined since mid June with a left shin contusion.
However, all signs indicate an IL stint should be avoided as of right now. I am sure the Braves will proceed with caution given their depth and lead in the division. I expect the Braves to get a sense for how Minter is feeling after he rests during All-Star week and then proceed from there.