Atlanta Braves second baseman Tyler Pastornicky is congratulated by third base coach Brian Snitker as he scores in the third inning Tuesday against the Phillies. A day later, Pastoricky suffered an injury and was lost for the season. (Reuters)
ATLANTA — Tyler Pastornicky’s opportunity to fill in as Atlanta’s starting second baseman proved to be short-lived. Early Friday afternoon, the Braves announced that Pastornicky will undergo season-ending left knee surgery to repair the damage he sustained during a collision with Jason Heyward on Wednesday night.
An MRI exam performed on Thursday showed that Pastornicky tore the anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee. A timetable for recovery was not immediately provided.
The Braves filled Pastornicky’s roster spot by purchasing second baseman Phil Gosselin’s contract from Triple-A Gwinnett. Gosselin could simply provide depth while Paul Janish serves as the everyday second baseman in the absence of both Pastornicky and Dan Uggla.
When Uggla agreed it was time to undergo LASIK surgery and consequently begin a stint on the disabled list late Tuesday afternoon, the Braves promoted Pastornicky from Gwinnett with the expectation that he would serve as the starting second baseman in place of Uggla, who will not be eligible to be activated until Aug. 28.
With shortstop Andrelton Simmons and Janish manning the middle-infield spots, the Braves would have an incredibly gifted duo from a defensive standpoint. But Janish’s limited offensive capabilities have led the club to actively search for an infielder who could be acquired via a waiver-wire deal.
Pastornicky sustained his injury while ranging back to catch a Jimmy Rollins popup during the third inning of a 6-3 win over the Phillies. As he stopped to catch the ball along the right-field foul line, Pastornicky was clipped by a hard-charging Heyward, then fell to the ground. Both players said they had called for the ball.
After remaining on the ground for a short time, Pastornicky remained in the game for the completion of the inning, but he did not return to the field when the top of the fourth began.
Gosselin has batted .277 with two home runs and 11 RBIs in the 47 games he has played since being promoted from Double-A Mississippi to Gwinnett earlier this season.