“I’ve got a feeling that he’ll be better, just because he’s done it,” Gonzalez said before Wednesday’s game. “I know my first games managing and coaching third base, I was nervous — and I wasn’t even part of the game.
“I’m sure the young man was the same, so I’m looking for him to be a lot better.”
Chipper, Heyward in lineup
A day after third baseman Chipper Jones (knee) and right fielder Jason Heyward (shoulder) returned from injuries and cortisone injections, they were in the lineup for the second consecutive game Wednesday.
The Braves hope that Jones can avoid arthroscopic surgery for the slight meniscus tear in his right knee, a procedure that could sideline him 2-3 weeks.
“Talking to him and talking to the medical people, they say, go for it,” Gonzalez said. “There’s been people who’ve played with it.”
Jones, 39, went 1-for-5 with three strikeouts Tuesday after missing two starts. He looked fine in the field, but a bit tentative hitting.
Gonzalez said he hoped to play Jones at third base Wednesday and Thursday, then use him as designated hitter for the first two games of a weekend series against the Angels in Anaheim. He planned to play Jones at third base for the series finale Sunday against the Angels and use catcher Brian McCann as DH.
Heyward went 1-for-3 with two walks Tuesday in his return to the lineup after a one-week absence for inflammation of the rotator cuff in his right (non-throwing) shoulder. He had been limited to one pinch-hitting and two late-innings defensive appearances since his previous start.
Peter Moylan’s back surgery went as planned Monday in Los Angeles, where the relief pitcher will stay and be re-evaluated Friday by surgeon Robert Watkins.
More could be known about Moylan’s recovery schedule after that follow-up visit. Before surgery, he was told that recovery was anywhere from 8-12 weeks for other pitchers who have had similar procedures.
Moylan had surgery for a bulging disk in his lower back, the third such surgery he has had in a decade.