Shawn Kelley left during the eighth inning of last night’s Nationals game due to an arm injury that left him with a badly-swollen right hand. “Just on that last pitch I felt something go down through my arm and my hand swelled up a bit,” Kelley told media, including Chelsea Janes of the Washington Post. “I just didn’t feel like I could pitch another pitch honestly. I couldn’t really grip the ball. I motioned for somebody to come out because I knew it wasn’t good.” Kelley will meet with doctors today to evaluate the problem, which is particularly ominous given that Kelley has twice undergone Tommy John surgery. The veteran right-hander has had two separate DL stints due to a bad back and a trap strain, and these injury issues have very likely impacted Kelley’s subpar performance. Kelley has a 7.27 ERA over 26 innings this season, with huge spikes in his homer rate and hard-hit ball rate. As Janes notes, Kelley may not have made the Nats’ playoff roster even if healthy, though the team will have one less bullpen option to choose from if Kelley is indeed hurt.
Here’s more from around the NL East…
- Brad Ausmus won’t be returning as the Tigers’ manager next year, though Peter Gammons of GammonsDaily.com reports that some in the Mets front office are interested in speaking with Ausmus. New York has also been rumored to be making a managerial change, and will likely look into several different candidates if it does indeed move on from the Terry Collins era. It’s also possible that the Mets’ interest in Ausmus may not necessarily involve managing; Ausmus also worked as a special assistant in the Padres’ baseball ops department before taking the Tigers job.
- Also from Gammons’ piece, he expects the Braves to be listening to offers for Julio Teheran during the GM Meetings in November. Teheran drew some trade buzz this past summer, with Atlanta reportedly holding onto Teheran since it was unable to land another top-tier arm to replace the right-hander as the rotation’s ace. Teheran has struggled to a 4.52 ERA over 175 1/3 IP this season, though that inflated number has been due to a lack of success at SunTrust Park — Teheran has a 6.23 ERA at home this season and a 2.84 ERA on the road. While Teheran’s swinging-strike and contact rates have also gone in the wrong direction, between his controllable contract and the idea that he would rebound in another ballpark, the Braves would certainly garner quite a bit of interest in trade talks.
- Braves CEO and chairman Terry McGuirk told MLB.com’s Mark Bowman and other media that the team won’t make any management decisions until after the season is over, though McGuirk did praise manager Brian Snitker and president of baseball operations John Hart. McGuirk expects Hart, whose deal is up after the season, to return in 2018. The Braves hold a club option on Snitker’s services for next year, though there has been speculation that the team could be exploring a change in the dugout, with FanRag Sports’ Jon Heyman hearing from a source that the Braves are currently “leaning toward” hiring a new manager. Snitker will meet with the front office to learn about his future, and USA Today’s Bob Nightengale tweets that this meeting could take place as soon as today.