The Braves aren’t concerned that shortstop Dansby Swanson’s hand injury will linger into next season.
Swanson, 24, was left off the postseason roster after partially tearing a ligament in his left hand. He left a Sept. 25 game in New York with hand discomfort after fouling off a pitch and was shut down for the season.
“He just needs rest,” manager Brian Sniker said. “Just needs time. Everything will heal. He should be fine. It’s just something that’s going to take a while.
“They (doctors) never expressed any concerns long-term going forward that he shouldn’t be ready for spring training.”
The Dodgers eliminated the Braves in four games in the National League Division Series, largely because of the underdog’s offensive struggles. Swanson wasn’t particularly an asset in that department, hitting .239 with a .34 on-base mark, but his defense brought immense value.
Perhaps it was missed in Game 4, when a ball exceeded the reach of replacement shortstop Charlie Culberson, awarding the Dodgers a lead they wouldn’t relinquish.
“I felt very confident with Charlie out there,” Sniker said. “I mean, it happens.”
Next season will be vital for Swanson as his offense tries to catch up to his defense. Even with a disappointing bat, his defense and intangibles were key for a 90-win club.