The extent of Braves catcher Evan Gattis’ recent injury, and the amount of time he could miss because of it, is still unclear. On Monday night, following the team’s 5-3 win against the New York Mets, Gattis said that he does not expect to miss much time with the bulging thoracic disc. However, there is no timetable.
Whether Gattis misses the required two weeks after being placed on the 15-day disabled list or more time, it’s an important loss for manager Fredi Gonzalez’s lineup. Despite rookie catcher Christian Bethancourt’s successful, albeit brief, stint in a starting role, making the leap to El Oso Blanco levels of production is going to be difficult. He’s anchored the cleanup spot for the Braves with his 16 home runs and he was on track to make an appearance during MLB All-Star weekend, either as an All-Star or Home Run Derby participant.
It’s becoming repetitive, but the Braves still ranked 29th in runs scored entering Tuesday’s games. They are a below-average group right now, and losing a bat like Gattis is anything but helpful.
So how does Gattis’ injury affect Gonzalez’s lineup? And what other questions facing the offense (on-base percentage, B.J. Upton’s short, successful stiny at leadoff, etc.) could come up between now and the All-Star break? Our writers — Zach Dillard, Cory McCartney, Jay Clemons and Knox Bardeen — discuss the team’s hot streak and what lies ahead in the latest Chopcast: