The Blue Jays have made some injury announcements prior to today’s game in Atlanta, revealing that second baseman Devon Travis will be shut down for the season and undergo exploratory surgery on his left shoulder.
Shortstop Troy Tulowitzki has left the team to see a specialist in Boston regarding his own shoulder injury, and an update can be expected on his health following that examination. This news shouldn’t be taken as a setback in Tulo’s recovery, and he’s reportedly seeing some early improvement.
While the news on Travis has a much lesser impact on 2015, it almost brings me more worry. Especially given that the Tulowitzki news should be viewed as expected until we receive further word. Any time an athlete is forced to undergo an exploratory surgery, that suggests that team doctors and specialists have yet to fully grasp the problem ailing them physically.
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This fits the narrative with Travis, who has experienced a handful of setbacks across multiple recoveries this season for an injury in the same shoulder. Perhaps he pushed it past the point of return for this season when he insisted on playing through the pain early on, which was admirable, but the medical reports on him have continued to be vague.
Given the lack of minor league activity to provide rehab at-bats, shutting down Travis for the remainder of the season was already accepted as the likely call. Some certainty would ease the worry of Jays fans, though, and allow the medical staff to put Devon in the best position to succeed in 2016. If he and Tulowitzki stay healthy, the Blue Jays could be among baseball’s best when it comes to middle infield offense.
The big battle remains Tulowitzki’s playoff push, though, and this visit should shed some much-needed light on that timeline. If this becomes an issue of pain tolerance, then the Blue Jays need only to worry about Tulowitzki’s performance as the offseason provides plenty of time to heal. If this is an issue that can be worsened by playing, though, then Toronto will have some decisions to make. They won’t be enjoyable decisions, either.