After putting together yet another strong season in the minors last season, and hitting well in limited play this past spring in camp, prospect outfielder Drew Waters has yet to play in a game in 2022, due to a hamstring injury. Expected to potentially debut with the Atlanta Braves this year, Waters has missed the first few weeks of the campaign, however, the 23-year-old is scheduled to make his long awaited return on Thursday, as he’s slated to start in High-A Rome’s lineup.
Tonight will be the first game of what will likely be a short rehab assignment with Rome. Waters originally was assigned to Triple-A Gwinnett to begin 2022, but ever since early April he’s been on the 7-day injured list, trying to recover from some kind of hamstring strain.
Waters’ standard numbers went down a bit in 2021, in his first full-season at the Triple-A level. But digging a bit deeper, there were numerous aspects of his game that marked an improvement, including a much higher walk rate (10.2 BB%) and a career-high in home runs (11). Also, now with former teammate Cristian Pache now gone (as part of the Matt Olson trade with the A’s), Waters has become the prospect outfielder of the future, at least in terms of talent closest to the majors.
Regardless, though, I’m sure missing nearly a month to start this season had to be such a disappointment for Waters. Luckily, he still has plenty of time to post big numbers in the minors, and possibly even make his Atlanta debut. The first step was getting back healthy, and today’s news tells us he’s at least accomplished that. Hopefully after a brief stretch with Rome, Waters will be back in Gwinnett by next week.