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Atlanta Braves news and links: Freddie Freeman was playing with a “cracked” rib

Last week, it was reported that Freddie Freeman was playing through “various ailments.” Now we know just how serious one of those ailments was.

Atlanta Braves v Colorado Rockies Photo by Dustin Bradford/Getty Images


Braves get swept by Rockies as NL West road game woes continue

Tyrell Jenkins had an extremely rough first inning against the Rockies. He walked three batters (including the pitcher) and gave up four runs. He eventually exited the game in the fourth inning with the Braves down 7-0 and basically out of the game. This is despite the fact that the Braves walked nine times on the day. They only managed to get two runs, and the game ended 7-2. At this point, the entire NL West is a house of horrors for the Braves.

Could the Braves already be gearing up for a blockbuster trade?

The Braves made a decent-sized wave on the trade rumor mill when it was reported that they were ready to capitalize on their "long-time interest" in Chris Sale by making a deal. Now, the Braves do have the prospects that Chicago would desire in order to make a deal happen, but I’d say that the chances of any trade for Sale coming to Atlanta would be pretty slim. Still, it’s interesting to see that the Braves are interested in making win-now moves at this point of the rebuild.

The Braves want to be competitive in 2017. I don't blame them, and for as bad as this year's team is, they could flirt with respectability with a handful of win-now moves. The process would be sped up exponentially if Coppolella decides to dig into the farm system and land a Chris Sale-type player — a controllable, talented player who can help the team win beyond 2016 and 2017.

Braves are putting plenty of players on the trade market

Even if they don’t make a splashy win-now move, the Braves will probably be very busy once the trade deadline rolls around next week. As such, players like Dario Alvarez, Hunter Cervenka, and Ian Krol are currently candidates to be moved. The Braves are even trying to move Erick Aybar, which shows you just how aggressive they are when they’re actively trying to get something for the 2016 version of Erick Aybar. There were rumors that they were also "aggressively" shopping Jeff Francoeur, but those rumors were quickly shot down. For what it’s worth, one player seems to approve.

Freddie Freeman was playing with a "cracked left rib"

Last week, it was reported that not only was Freddie Freeman dealing with stitches in his back following the removal of a cancerous mole, it was also made known that he was dealing with a rib injury of sorts that kept him from doing batting practice. Now we know that it was actually a cracked rib that was adding to his discomfort. Despite the fact that the injury kept the first baseman up at night through much of June, Freeman still played through the injury.

Though there was a point where the pain and lack of production was significant enough for him to contemplate going on the disabled list, Freeman successfully hid the left rib injury which occurred courtesy of a collision with Marlins outfielder Christian Yelich during a May 29 game at Turner Field.

"They said if I could deal with the pain, I should play," Freeman said. "So, I did and for some reason I started hitting. It was a weird thing. I don't know if it was because I couldn't do too much and I was just trying to stay up through the middle and not hurt myself. Sometimes, you can get too big when you feel too good."


Ken Griffey Jr. and Mike Piazza receive official induction into Hall of Fame

The 2016 Hall of Fame induction ceremony took place yesterday, and two extremely worthy inductees took their place among the greats at Cooperstown. Mike Piazza was only drafted by the Dodgers as a favor to his father from Tommy LaSorda, and he ended up becoming one of — if not the — best-hitting catchers in the history of baseball. Meanwhile, Ken Griffey Jr. was taken first overall in his draft class and managed to live up to all of the hype that came with that. Injuries did take a little bit of the shine off the tail end of his career, but that still didn’t stop him from getting a record 99.3% selection from the voters. Plus, he’s still the coolest guy in a backwards hat and pinstriped suit.

Cubs are on the verge of trading for Aroldis Chapman

The Yankees are selling, and one of their biggest trade pieces could be on his way to the Friendly Confines of Wrigley Field. New York and Chicago are reportedly "close" to agreeing to a deal that would send Aroldis Chapman to the Cubs in exchange for at least one of Chicago’s top prospects.

It is currently unclear what is holding up the completion of the trade. Despite some reports that the Cubs were trying to complete a contract extension with Chapman before announcing the deal, FanRag Sports’ Jon Heyman reports that the club has not had extension talks with the lefty to this point.

Sahadev Sharma of The Athletic Chicago reports that Chapman is the only Yankee heading to Chicago in the proposed deal, despite other reports that the team could be pairing him with another veteran in talks with the Cubs.

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