Braves closer Grilli ruptures Achilles in loss to Rockies
Atlanta Braves closer Jason Grilli ruptured his left Achilles tendon while trying to cover first base against the Colorado Rockies on Saturday night, the team announced after the game.
Grilli, 38, collapsed after running off the mound during the ninth inning of Atlanta's 3-2 loss at Coors Field. His foot appeared to get caught in the infield grass. After being examined by team trainer Jeff Porter and getting carted off, the Achilles injury was confirmed.
Grilli is expected to miss the remainder of the 2015 season.
The veteran stepped in for All-Star reliever Craig Kimbrel this season after signing a two-year deal with the Braves and exceeded expectations, logging 24 saves with a 2.94 ERA. It was a bounce-back season in the making for Grilli, who struggled to regain his 2013 All-Star form last season. He's been one of the few bright spots for a bullpen that owns the third-worst ERA in baseball.
(Even worse for a team inching closer to becoming sellers at the trade deadline: Grilli was one of the team's potential trade assets that held value on the market.)
With Grilli out of the bullpen equation, Atlanta will likely turn to veteran Jim Johnson, another offseason acquisition, to fill the ninth-inning role, at least in the short term.
The Braves have now lost four straight games heading into their first-half finale against the Rockies on Sunday.