Atlanta Braves left fielder Justin Upton left tonight’s game against the Colorado Rockies after the top of the first inning with a left hamstring strain. Upton beat out an infield single in the first inning, and ended up scoring on a single by Tommy LaStella. Upton did not take the field in the bottom of the first, and was replaced by Jordan Schafer.
It is not clear just how serious the injury to his hamstring is, or even at what point he strained it. He will likely be out at least a couple of days. We all know hamstring injuries can be tricky, so a trip to the disabled list cannot be ruled out either.
Upton will be evaluated tomorrow, and the Braves are expected to release more information then.
Upton is having a great year so far, hitting .295 with 14 home runs, 36 RBI, six steals, and 34 runs scored.
Shafer will likely be Upton’s replacement in left unless he needs to be placed on the disabled list. Utility man Ryan Doumit likely would see an uptick in playing time if the Braves face a lefty with Upton out.
The absence of Upton will leave a hole in the Braves’ lineup. It is likely that they will move Jason Heyward back to the three hole, and put the elder Upton (B.J) in the leadoff hole with either Shafer or Andrelton Simmons in the two hole. You do hate to shuffle a lineup that has put up 29 runs in their last four and a half games, but with the injury to Upton, they won’t have a choice.