A little more than 24 hours after receiving two cortisone injections in his right knee, Chipper Jones was encouraged by how it was feeling Monday.
But he won’t know for another day or so if the torn meniscus, which was diagnosed Sunday, will still force him to undergo arthroscopic surgery and miss two to three weeks of action.
Jones plans to test the knee in batting practice Tuesday, and he said if all goes well he might return to the lineup as early as Tuesday against the Astros.
“We’re just going to play it by ear from here on out,” said Jones, who had surgery for an ACL tear on his left knee last August. “If I have any more pain or it keeps me out of any more ball games, go clean it out. And if the injection works and I’m able to continue to play through it, I will.”
Jones said the right knee felt good enough Monday that he felt like he could play, which was considerable progress from when he was scratched 10 minutes before Sunday’s game against the Phillies. He’d been uncomfortable running and even swinging left-handed in the indoor cage. Hitting from the right side was what had given Jones the most problem since his right knee started bothering him about a month ago.
Jones said if he still felt pain Tuesday when he tests it, he might give it one more day to see if the shots take hold. He said Braves orthopedist Dr. Joe Chandler told him the meniscus tear is so small it could heal on its own.
If he is still in pain Wednesday, Jones figures surgery is the next step.
“I’m still kind of skeptical as to delaying the inevitable,” said Jones, who had arthroscopic surgery for a torn meniscus in his left knee in 1996. “I don’t know if this is something that’s going to allow me to play for two or three weeks and then have to go and have a surgery anyway. But obviously we made a decision to get the injections yesterday.”