Just as Jason Heyward seems to be turning the corner during a tumultuous 2013 season, he has suffered another setback. The Braves outfielder was removed during the early stages of Tuesday night’s action against the Washington Nationals, and Mark Bowman (of MLB.com) has posted this tweet in reference to the early exit:
Heyward exited with a muscle strain in his neck. He’s listed as day-to-day
— Mark Bowman (@mlbbowman) August 6, 2013
“Day-to-Day” can be one of the most dreaded phrases in baseball, and this is no exception. Heyward was famously sidelined earlier in the year after an emergency appendectomy, and prior to the injury, he was struggling mightily at the plate. In the 2nd half of the season, the former 1st-round pick and uber-prospect began to rebound, posting a .275/.413/.471 slash line with 3 home runs in 51 plate appearances.
With the sound of Bowman’s report (and several others), the team doesn’t look to be bracing itself for a serious injury. That is obviously great news for Atlanta, but the jury is still out on Heyward’s “real” level of production. There is a legitimate discussion forming about his ability to stay on the field for long periods of time, and little bumps and bruises such as this won’t do any wonders toward changing that attitude.