The Atlanta Braves have been without one of their best hitters and outfielders for almost a month now. Jason Heyward got hit in the face by a pitch on Aug. 21. When he comes back depends obviously on how he heals and how he feels. They won’t rush him back too soon and risk future injury.
However, the Braves are missing their star player a lot. It’s hard to replace a player like Heyward, and at this point in the season, every game counts. The Braves need to keep winning as they don’t have anything locked up just yet.
Heyward is near the top of each Braves statistical category. One player of his caliber can hurt a team when he is either not playing well or is injured. In Heyward’s case, his injury came at a difficult time for the Braves. They need a productive end to the season and hopefully gain some momentum for the playoffs. This is still a young team. In fact, the Braves are one of the youngest teams in baseball. A guy like Heyward, who has actually been around a few years, is something they desperately need. He needs to be on the field as a leader and mentor to the young players in these meaningful games.
Every Braves fan remembers last year’s one-game playoff against the St. Louis Cardinals. It was a tough thing to watch. But, the Braves can avoid being in that one-game win-or-go-home situation this year by continuing to play good baseball. Not having to be in that extremely important wildcard game is a benefit to any team. Hopefully the Braves remember that incredibly difficult loss and finish out this season strong.
There are still high hopes for the Braves this season and a long playoff run could be in the cards. The key to all of this is Heyward returning from his injury and being productive again. There is no doubt he is capable of making his comeback and immediately helping the team end the season positively. So again, I say, hurry back, Heyward!