Braves left-hander Matt Marksberry, who as of Tuesday was battling potentially serious health issues, awoke from a medically induced coma yesterday, writes David O’Brien of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Marksberry had been suffering from intense stomach pains and wound up suffering a seizure that led to a collapsed lung while at the hospital for treatment, according to O’Brien. Marksberry’s sister tweeted that her brother “still has a long journey ahead of him” as he recovers from the frightening incident. Needless to say, we’re happy to learn that the 26-year-old appears to be on the road to recovery and continue to hold Marksberry in our thoughts as we wish him a speedy recovery.
A few more items from the NL East…
- Neither the Nationals nor Ian Desmond are entirely ruling out a reunion this winter, reports Chelsea Janes of the Washington Post, though she characterizes the possibility as unlikely. Janes spoke to a team source who said, “I don’t see it, but anything is possible.” That’s far from a ringing endorsement for Desmond, but her colleague Thomas Boswell did lay out a scenario in which it could make sense: play Desmond in center field, move Trea Turner back to shortstop and deploy Danny Espinosa as a versatile utility infielder. Janes speculates that Desmond could realistically look to pursue something along the lines of Ben Zobrist’s four-year, $56MM pact, but that may be more than the Nationals care to invest, as she adds that the team “won’t stretch their means for his services.” Also, Janes writes that the Nats are looking to become a more contact-oriented team, and strikeouts remain an issue for Desmond despite his rebound campaign in Texas.
- John Harper of the New York Daily News opines that while retaining Yoenis Cespedes should clearly be the Mets’ top priority this offseason, a pursuit of Kenley Jansen should be a close second. Harper argues that the $17.2MM value of the qualifying offer the team may be comfortable extending to Neil Walker would be better allocated to Jansen, who can team with Jeurys Familia and Addison Reed to give skipper Terry Collins one of the league’s most imposing bullpen trios, thereby taking some pressure off of a rotation that was plagued by injuries in 2016. There’s certainly merit to the notion, and the Mets have been willing to part with a first-round pick in the past for lesser-regarded players. However, while Harper throws out a speculative number of four years and $54MM, I’ll respectfully take the over on both of those figures, as both Jansen and Aroldis Chapman are in firm position not simply to surpass Jonathan Papelbon’s four-year, $50MM record for a relief pitcher but to absolutely shatter it by a substantial amount.