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Braves hope McCann OK for playoffs

ATLANTA — Brian McCann won’t catch again in the regular season, but the Braves are optimistic he will be ready to go for the playoffs.

“By getting him out early, I think we dodged a bullet,” manager Fredi Gonzalez said Friday.

McCann felt a twinge in the groin area warming up starting pitcher David Hale on Thursday night and left the game against Philadelphia in the second inning with a right adductor strain.

“I was hoping it would get better and it didn’t,” McCann said. “I’ve never had a groin problem at any time in my life.”

With the playoffs not starting until next Thursday, the Gwinnett resident and Duluth graduate has a week from the injury to get ready to play. He spent Friday undergoing treatment.

“It’s going to be day to day,” he said.

McCann had been injury free since missing the first month of the season while coming back from offseason surgery on his right shoulder. He has played in 102 games, posting a .256 average with 20 homers and 57 RBIs.

The 29-year-old is a free agent at the end of the season and is likely to be courted by American League teams who can use him as a designated hitter as well as catcher.