ST. LOUIS -- Right fielder Brian Jordan used the club's trip here to visit Dr. Rick Lehman, who helped him overcome back trouble while he played with the Cardinals several years ago.
Lehman offered a new diagnosis, which may lead to surgery this winter to correct a problem in Jordan's right hand. After reviewing X-rays, Lehman told Jordan a bone spur was causing the pain and his joints needed to be cleaned out. He also suggested Jordan might have suffered some cartilage and ligament damage.
Jordan, who took cortisone shots in his right hand, right wrist and left wrist following Wednesday afternoon's game, was not in Friday night's lineup and will probably miss this afternoon's game. He is hopeful the shots will reduce the inflammation and he can return to the lineup Sunday.
"It feels bad right now," Jordan said Friday afternoon. "I've had better days. I'm not even going to pick up a bat."
Jordan's problems began when he was struck out his hand by a Mike Thurman pitch June 22. The pain has steadily worsened, robbing him of some power and forcing him to alter his stance.
Jordan is considering more tests to pinpoint the problem, but if he undergoes an arthrogram he would probably miss the series and possibly the first game or two against the Reds next week. He's unwilling to miss that much time, which is also the reason he rejects immediate surgery.
"I can't have surgery now or I'm gone for the season," he said.
Instead, Jordan planned to strap a portable stimulation machine on his hand and wear it for the next 48 hours and see if it speeds up his recovery. ...
Rudy Seanez, on the disabled list with a stress fracture of his right elbow, is encouraged by how it feels. He's hopeful two weeks of rest will be enough time to allow it to heal, though doctors suggest it will take at least twice that long.
"There's no soreness or anything," he said. "That's subsided, I'd say."
Seanez plans to have another bone scan done when he returns to Atlanta next week to check on his progress.
"We'll evaluate it and see what to do," he said. ...
With four days remaining before rosters expand, the Braves are mulling their minor league choices. Manager Bobby Cox indicated Friday the club will recall a third catcher, but Class AAA Richmond catcher Pascual Matos suffered a severely sprained ankle recently and either Fernando Lunar (Class AA Greenville) or Mike Mahoney (Richmond) will probably be called up instead.
Cox also wants additional pitching, so left-hander Derrin Ebert is a candidate to return, along with Jon Ratliff. ...
One of the season's most puzzling hitters is second baseman Bret Boone, who hit .178 in June and .218 in July after batting .288 in April-May. He's reclaimed the stroke he had during the first two months, hitting .308 with 13 RBI and and 14 doubles in August. ...
The Braves headed into Friday night's game riding a season-high seven-game winning streak. Interestingly enough, all seven wins had been come-from-behind and in the last five victories Braves pitchers had issued only five walks.