Evan Gattis struggled to get his back loose despite treatment throughout the day Saturday, and with a doubleheader to play the Braves decided to try to buy him some more time to get healthy.
They called up top catching prospect Christian Bethancourt to catch Game 2 of Saturday’s doubleheader and for now, plan to keep him up for the short-term, in an attempt to see if Gattis can avoid a stint on the disabled list over the next several days.
Gattis injured his rhomboid muscle swinging through a change-up in his first at-bat against the Phillies Friday night.
The Braves optioned pitcher Juan Jaime back to Triple-A Gwinnett to see if they can keep from having to put Gattis on the disabled list for a 15-day stint.
“We’re still not out of the woods with Gattis,” Gonzalez said. “I think we’re buying a couple of days because we don’t want to DL him and lose him for 15 days. So we’re buying some time there and hopefully this thing gets cleared up here in the next couple days or it starts feeling better.”
If that’s what happens, Gonzalez said he looks at Bethancourt’s stay as a short-term one, but that will depend on how well Gattis heals over the next few days.
Gattis had X-rays taken Saturday, which were negative. The Braves medical staff still believes it’s a muscular issue in his upper back. Gattis will undergo an MRI when the team returns to Atlanta after this weekend series just to be sure.
“I don’t think it’s going to be a long-term thing, like an oblique or something like that,” Gattis said. “It’s probably a muscle strain. We’ll get an MRI when we get back and see what’s going on. I’ve got a dose pack (of anti-inflammatories) and we’ll go from there.”
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