Braves catcher Travis d’Arnaud’s right leg improving every day

BOSTON – The lower part of Travis d’Arnaud’s right leg is swollen, sore, tight and more.

“All the adjectives you can use,” d’Arnaud said.

He soon adds: “And it could’ve been worse.”

On the play Saturday when his lower right leg injury occurred, d’Arnaud jumped to catch Austin Riley’s throw home and, as he caught it, spun around in mid-air to try to tag Pete Alonso. Alonso slid into home before d’Arnaud could turn around all the way. During the collision at home – which could’ve led to other injuries – it looked as if d’Arnaud’s leg crumpled.

“I immediately felt it,” d’Arnaud told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution of the pain.

He underwent X-rays and an MRI as part of the Braves’ comprehensive evaluation. The X-rays were negative, and manager Brian Snitker said everything returned clean. D’Arnaud didn’t know what to name his injury, and the Braves have not termed it anything specific.

But D’Arnaud, who left Saturday’s game because of the injury, has not played since. William Contreras caught Sunday’s game and was the starting catcher Tuesday for the first of two games in Boston. Contreras is expected to catch Wednesday’s game.

Snitker on Tuesday said the Braves want to get to Miami – where they begin a three-game series Friday – and see if d’Arnaud can play against the Marlins. D’Arnaud said his leg has felt better each day.

“I just got treatment today,” he said when asked if he expects to play Friday. “I’m going to try to flush all this stuff out to be ready to go as soon as possible.”

D’Arnaud, an All-Star catcher this season, is batting .257 with a .749 OPS. He has hit 11 homers while driving in 40 runs. The Braves will miss his presence behind the plate until he returns.

But Contreras, 24, and an All-Star as a designated hitter this year, is improving behind the plate. He has appeared there 40 times this season, so his maturation could be occurring because of experience. Still, it’s impressive for someone known for his bat.

“His game-calling has been tremendous,” d’Arnaud said. “His study habits are through the roof. He’s very adaptable in games, too, like he picks up on little things that he might not have seen last year. Obviously, his offense has been speaking for itself with his hard work that he’s been putting in (as a hitter). But just the daily work ethic of trying to be 1% better every day, he’s improved on that so tremendously this year. And now that he’s done it for so many days in a row, it’s been 100 days so now it’s like 100% better.”

Yates still at Gwinnett

Kirby Yates’ rehab assignment will continue with appearances for Triple-A Gwinnett on Wednesday and Friday.

On Sunday, Yates threw another scoreless inning. He has allowed one earned run over 8-1/3 innings across three levels on his rehab assignment.

The Braves have not released a timeline for him to join them, but we can go by this: Pitchers are allowed a maximum of 30 days for their rehab assignment. Yates began his July 16. He should be close to joining the big-league team.

Albies is ‘one of those guys that makes this thing run’

It’s important to remember the Braves are without their starting second baseman. And also that their second baseman, at age 25, already has two Silver Slugger Awards and two All-Star nods.

He’s an impact player.

“He’s one of those guys that makes this thing run,” Snitker said Tuesday. “It’s just his enthusiasm and energy and just the person he is and what he brings, the consistency every day. All that stuff. All the intangibles Ozzie brings, you miss, and it would be great to get him back, whenever that is.”

Albies is beginning to perform baseball activities, like playing catch. He’s also moving around more.

He’s expected to return at some point this season.

O’Day heads to Triple-A

On Monday, the Braves announced they transferred right-hander Darren O’Day’s rehab assignment to Gwinnett.

He dealt with a strained left calf muscle that occurred in July, when a comebacker hit him in that calf.

“That calf kind of bit him pretty good. I think more than what he actually thought,” Snitker said. “Like the days after, it kind of took him a little longer than what he kind of thought it was going to.”

Before the Braves sent him up to Gwinnett, O’Day threw a scoreless inning, with one strikeout, for High-A Rome to begin his rehab assignment.

Braves in Boston

The Braves are one of the lucky National League teams: They get to go to historic Fenway Park.

Snitker is enjoying the city, in which the Braves spent Monday’s off-day.

“It’s just really cool to come here all the time,” he said. “I love this city. I mean, it’s a great place to have an off-day (Monday). You can get out and walk. You can’t go wrong anywhere when you stop in and have lunch or dinner. “I love coming here. And then this ballpark.”

When he was a third-base coach years ago, Snitker signed his name inside the Green Monster, a tradition for the players and coaches making their first trips here.

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