Kris Medlen Exits Sunday's Game With Elbow Strain

Brandon Beachy Leaves Monday's Start With Tightness In Right Arm

Monday, March 10, 2014
Kris Medlen pitching for the Braves Sunday at Port St. Lucie
Kris Medlen pitching for the Braves Sunday at Port St. Lucie
- photo by Tim Evearitt

SUNDAY AT PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla. -- When Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez delayed announcing his Opening Day starter in case an injury altered his plan, he was not necessarily preparing himself to deal with an ailment as potentially serious as the one Kris Medlen incurred while pitching against the Mets on Sunday afternoon.

Medlen exited the game in the fourth inning with what the Braves are calling a right forearm strain. The veteran right-hander will undergo an MRI exam and be further evaluated by the team's orthopedist, Dr. Marvin Royster, in the Orlando area on Monday.

While there is a chance Medlen will learn he needs to undergo Tommy John surgery for the second time in less than four years, the Braves are hoping for the best and hanging on to the optimism that they gathered after Mets physician Dr. Struan Coleman examined the pitcher Sunday afternoon.

Gonzalez had no choice but to fear for the worst when Medlen immediately walked toward the dugout after throwing his second pitch to Mets first baseman Matt Clark with two outs in the fourth inning. Medlen had grabbed his elbow and walked toward second base to gather himself after he threw his first pitch to Clark.

The always accommodating Medlen provided a sense of what he is feeling when he chose not to talk to reporters before exiting the stadium to make the 90-minute drive back to the Braves' Spring Training facility.

Unfortunately, Medlen's reaction following Sunday's final pitch was similar to the one he had when he exited a start against the Mets on Aug. 4, 2010. He underwent Tommy John surgery two weeks later and then endured a long rehab process that sidelined him until the final week of the 2011 regular season.

Since returning from that procedure, Medlen has established himself as one of the game's most underappreciated pitchers. He has produced a 2.47 ERA in the 43 starts he has made since becoming a mainstay in Atlanta's starting rotation on July 31, 2012.

With Tim Hudson now with the Giants, Medlen stood as the obvious choice to serve as Atlanta's Opening Day starter. The Braves might now begin the regular season with their top two projected starters -- Medlen and Mike Minor -- both on the disabled list. Minor reported to Spring Training behind schedule because of the month-long stretch of inactivity he experienced after undergoing a urinary tract procedure on Dec. 31. He began throwing off a mound again last week and is still aiming to join Atlanta's rotation by the end of the regular season's second week.

If Minor and Medlen are both sidelined at the beginning of the season, Atlanta could open the year with a starting rotation that consists of Brandon Beachy, Julio Teheran, Alex Wood, and Freddy Garcia.

Courtesy of two early scheduled off-days, the Braves could use a four-man rotation until April 12. If Minor continues to progress like he has over the past couple of weeks, he would likely be ready to join the rotation before that date.

MONDAY AT CLEARWATER, Fla. -- Approximately 24 hours after Medlen walked off the mound with a potentially serious elbow injury, BrandsonBeachy was rudely reminded on Monday that he has not completely recovered from the elbow ailments that have limited him to five Major League starts over the past 20 months.

As Beachy labored through two ugly innings against the Phillies on Monday afternoon, he threw just 14 of his 37 pitches for strikes and saw his fastball top out at 88 miles per hour. Instead of attempting to complete the four innings he was slated to pitch, the Braves right-hander exited and confirmed he has felt some tightness around his right elbow and biceps muscle over the past couple of weeks.

Members of the Braves' medical staff have comforted Beachy by telling him the discomfort he has felt should be viewed as normal given what he has experienced the past two years. After undergoing Tommy John surgery in June 2012, Beachy endured a frustration-filled return attempt and was limited to five starts in 2013 because of elbow inflammation.

Beachy was shut down in August, and a month later he underwent a cleanup surgical procedure, during which Dr. James Andrews removed a floating bone chip from his elbow. While the 27-year-old hurler has repeatedly said he has not felt any discomfort since he began throwing in January, he now admits that he has been restricted by the tightness he has felt the past couple of weeks.

Beachy was not ready to confirm whether he will make his next scheduled Spring Training start or project whether he will be ready for the start of the regular season. Monday's two-inning stint came just five days after he had tossed three scoreless innings against the Phillies on this same Bright House Field mound.

------- Source: MLB.com

Brandon Beachy
Brandon Beachy
- Photo2 by tim

Chattanooga Area Swim League Standings & Results

BLUE DIVISION Dalton                  3              1 Signal Mountain        3             1 Ooltewah    3             2 Stuart Heights     ... (click for more)

Former Lookout (2015) Max Kepler Homers For Twins At Yankee Stadium Sunday

The Minnesota Twins turned Yankee Stadium into a launchpad in the sixth inning of a 7-1 victory  Sunday over the Yankees. Three homers were hit back-to-back-to back, including one by former Lookouts' outfielder Max Kepler. Ironically the home runs were hit  off another ex-Lookout, RHP Nathan Eovaldi.  On the mound for Minnesota was Tyler Duffey, ... (click for more)

Teen Shot Multiple Times On 4th Avenue; No Reportable Suspect Information Available

A teen was shot multiple times on 4th Avenue on Monday night. The victim was 19-year-old JaMarcus Davis. Chattanooga Police responded at 7:20 p.m. to the area of the 2600 block of 4th Avenue on the report of shots fired. Police did not locate any victims at this location. A victim with multiple non-life threatening gunshot wounds arrived at a local hospital by personal ... (click for more)

Cleveland City Council Unanimously Approves Contract For New City Manager; Fivas To Make $140,000

The Cleveland City Council has unanimously approved a contract with Joe Fivas  as the next city manager. The council also created a new position, assistant city manager/chief financial officer. It is now one of two assistant city manager positions. Assistant City Manager Melinda Carroll will continue her management role with the title of assistant city manager/operations. ... (click for more)

General Bell: Chattanooga Needs The Coolidge Medal Of Honor Heritage Center - And Response (3)

I'm pleased and indeed compelled to let you know a bit more about the exciting and most honorable "Charles H. Coolidge Medal of Honor Heritage Center" planned for Coolidge Park.     Here's what the Heritage Center will be:  It will be a fitting capstone for Chattanooga's Coolidge Park on Northshore in downtown Chattanooga.  While this exceptional Chattanooga ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Pat Summitt’s Dash

In 1996 a woman named Linda Ellis wrote one of life’s most beautiful poems. Called “The Dash,” its first two verses read like this: “I read of a man who stood to speak at the funeral of a friend. He referred to the dates on the tombstone from the beginning…to the end. “He noted that first came the date of birth and spoke the following date with tears, but he said what ... (click for more)