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Chipper Jones has a torn meniscus

May 16, 2011, 9:12 AM EDT

Atlanta Braves v Los Angeles Dodgers Getty Images

They’re characterizing Chipper Jones’ knee injury as a “slight” meniscus tear, but is there anything “slight” when you’re 39-years-old and are already pretty brittle to begin with? The plan now: cortisone shot and some rest, but if that doesn’t work surgery is likely, which will put Jones out for a few weeks.

Remember that stuff I wrote this morning about future Hall of Famers as key players on a contending team?  Well, Jones is another one. Unlike the guys up in New York, however, Jones has continued to be a key contributor to the Braves this year, hitting .275/.366/.465 and leading the team with 27 RBI.  His loss will be felt if he does, indeed, need surgery.

For now the plan will be to either move Martin Prado to third and have Eric Hinske cover left field (my preference) or have Brooks Conrad take over for Jones at third (opposing hitters’ preference).  I’m guessing Fredi Gonzalez would go with the former.  Though really, if there is an extended Jones-absence, Atlanta will have to pick up a left fielder or a third baseman, methinks.

  1. rebarratige - May 16, 2011 at 9:26 AM

    It is straight up frightening to consider just how much the Braves’ offense has been leaning on Chipper, especially since everybody’s known that this sort of injury falls in the “it was only a matter of time” category.

    • atlsp - May 16, 2011 at 10:06 AM

      Speaking of which, this would be a good time for that Dan Uggla breakout that should also fall in the “it was only a matter of time” category. A good run by Uggs and a healthy Heyward to get back up to their norms would help cover Chipper’s absence for a few weeks.

      • rebarratige - May 16, 2011 at 10:25 AM

        Right-O.

        Re: Heyward, somebody needs to tell that kid that a league-worst 2-for-28 (I think that was the number) in May is not “playing through the pain.” It’s failing through the pain.

  2. Jonny 5 - May 16, 2011 at 9:40 AM

    He should tie bailing wire around his injured legs to numb them like the iron men of the past. These “kids” today don’t know what scrappy really means.

    On a serious note. Chipper really is amazing. He’s still hitting the ball, still getting int walks. His injury will knock the Braves back in the standings a bit more. And he’s 39.

  3. jamie54 - May 16, 2011 at 10:25 AM

    Death, taxes, and Chipper Jones going down with an injury. Unfortunately, sad but true.

  4. pmcenroe - May 16, 2011 at 10:45 AM

    this is not good for the Braves and his career could very well be done. There is a pretty long recovery time to get back to 100% from a surgery like this.

    • rebarratige - May 16, 2011 at 1:19 PM

      About that “pretty long recovery time” – the estimate was two or three weeks, IIRC. Tack on a week or two to account for bad luck and for the fact that Chipper Jones is Old Man River, and he’ll be out for around a month. Not season-ended, and almost certainly not career-ending.

      • pmcenroe - May 16, 2011 at 1:59 PM

        Not if he has to have arthroscopic surgery to remove part of the meniscus. I would know I’ve had it done twice (once in each knee) both in my 20’s both while playing collge ball so I can’t imagine a 39 year old trying to comeback right after surgery to play MLB. But you dont take my word for it, see Chris Coghlan and Miguel Monterro last year as examples.

  5. natstowngreg - May 16, 2011 at 5:07 PM

    Fantasy owners across North America agree with the moving Pardo back to 3B option.

    As for Chipper, unfortunate that a great career is ending with frequent stints on the DL.

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