Vivlamore reporting from Turner Field with your Braves report.
Chipper Jones underwent a surgical procedure Saturday morning to have fluid removed from his left leg.
Jones, on the 15-day disabled list with the contusion, said he had 120 ccs drained from what he describes as a hematoma.
“I feel so much better now,” Jones said. “It was throbbing. It let me know with everything that I did. Now, we’ve relieved a lot of the pressure down there and I can’t feel my heartbeat [in the ankle] anymore.
Jones said he was told my doctors that had he not had the surgical procedure he would have been dealing with the issue into September. Although he would have been able to play prior, he would have faced more problems had the area suffered another hit, such as from a foul ball.
Jones suffered the injury after being hit by a one-hopper off the bat of the Ray’s B.J. Upton on the artificial turf in Tampa on May 18th. He hopes to be able to return soon after being eligible to come off the disabled list, retroactive to Thursday.
“I couldn’t swear to it,” Jones said. “I think I should be, if not ready, fairly close.”
A trip to the disabled list became necessary with Jones’ inability to run. He was able to pinch-hit but required a pinch-runner. Jones said he didn’t want to force Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez to use two players with an already short bench. With Brian McCann (flu-like symptoms), David Ross (groin) and Freddie Freeman (blurry vision) out of the lineup, the Braves needed to make a roster move in the midst of a six-game losing streak.
“This team will make its adjustments,” Jones said. “We are going through a rough time right now. We have guys who are sick, not able to play. We got guys hurt, gimpy. We got people who can’t see. Maybe we will get everybody healthy, not sick and able to see again all at the same time and we’ll go back on a pretty good roll.”
Entering Sunday night’s game against the Nationals, the Braves were 19-5 with Jones in the lineup and 7-17 without him.
“No I can’t,” Jones said when asked to point to the reason the team has struggled in his absence. “It’s frustrating to watch. Somebody has to step up. There are a 162 games to look forward to next year. Somebody has to step out. Somebody has to get the big out, get the big hit, make the big play – all those things that you have to do on a daily basis to win ball games.”