Braves shortstop Alex Gonzalez is doubtful for Wednesday’s final game against the Phillies after he had to leave Tuesday night’s game with a strained right calf, the same injury which had kept him out of the final four games of the Braves last road trip.
The Braves have called up shortstop prospect Tyler Pastornicky from the Instructional League to give them another shortstop to back up the veteran Jack Wilson Wednesday in Gonzalez’s absence.
“It looks doubtful for (Gonzalez) tomorrow,” Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez said after the game Tuesday night, characterizing it as more serious than just re-aggravating his sore calf. “But hopefully it’s not one of those things that’s a lingering thing.”
Gonzalez returned to the lineup on Monday against the Phillies and showed no ill effects, while going 1-for-3 with a double. But he left Tuesday night’s game after only two innings in the field. Gonzalez pinch hit Wilson for him in the bottom of the second inning.
“Just fielding his position,” said Gonzalez, when asked how his shortstop strained it. “It wasn’t one specific play or one specific move that he did that aggravated it.”
Gonzalez will be re-evaluated Wednesday. In the meantime, Pastornicky is expected to arrive from Orlando on Wednesday to give the Braves insurance behind Wilson at shortstop.
This is the first major-league call-up for Pastornicky, who was at Turner Field less than two weeks ago to be honored as the Double-A Mississippi Braves player of the year. Pastornicky, 21, finished an impressive minor league season in Triple-A Gwinnett before suffering a high ankle sprain in mid-August. Pastornicky, who’s healthy now, hit .365 (38-for-104) in 27 games for Gwinnett and .314 in 117 games combined between Mississippi and Gwinnett.
Gonzalez had been one of the Braves’ hottest hitters of late, going 15-for-33 (.455) with three home runs, five doubles and eight RBIs in his previous nine games entering Tuesday.