PHILADELPHIA -- Braves manager Bobby Cox has never liked to bring unnecessary attention to himself. But the legendary skipper has been very appreciative of all the well-wishes he has received while visiting various Major League cities for the last time.
The Phillies recognized Cox's final regular-season trip to Philadelphia before Wednesday's series finale. As the Braves' manager presented the lineup card, the Phils' fans gave him a standing ovation and the Philadelphia players stood outside their dugout applauding.
"It's nice, I'm always humbled," Cox said before the game. "It's always nice of them to do something like that."
Cox has received a variety of gifts from nearly every team the Braves have played on the road this year. The Marlins were the only club that chose not to recognize his final visit.
The Phillies presented Cox with a large mural of himself after he had lunch with some of their employees earlier this week.
Cox wants Jurrjens to make Sunday start
PHILADELPHIA -- If this had happened at any other point of the season, the Braves might have shown some precaution and given Jair Jurrjens a few additional days to rest the small meniscus tear in his right knee.
But with 10 regular-season games remaining, the Braves are attempting to hold on to a slim lead in the National League Wild Card standings with a rotation that includes what appears to be three reliable hurlers -- Tim Hudson, Derek Lowe and Tommy Hanson.
After watching Mike Minor last just 2 1/3 innings during Tuesday night's loss to the Phillies, it wasn't too surprising to hear manager Bobby Cox say, "He better be able to pitch," when asked whether he thought Jurrjens would be ready to make his scheduled start against the Nationals on Sunday.
If Jurrjens is unable to pitch, the Braves will ask Brandon Beachy to pitch in his place for the second time in a six-day span. While Beachy proved effective in his Major League debut Monday night, Cox certainly would like to have the luxury of sending Jurrjens' experience to the mound for the series finale in Washington.
But Cox didn't completely rule out the possibility of starting Beachy again if they determine that the 9.00 ERA Minor has compiled in his past four starts is a product of being fatigued at the end of his first full professional season.
"It's just bad location," Cox said when asked if he felt Minor's troubles stemmed from fatigue.
Jurrjens felt discomfort in his right knee during a bullpen session that he completed at Citi Field on Friday night. An MRI exam performed Tuesday in Atlanta revealed he has a small horizontal meniscus tear.
"He can live with it and pitch with it," Cox said.
Freeman relishes first big league homer
PHILADELPHIA -- Jason Heyward used the first swing of his career to notch his first homer during the Braves' Opening Day victory over Carlos Zambrano and the Cubs. His good friend Freddie Freeman needed to wait through a couple of weeks before feeling the sensation created by his first career homer.
But Freeman proved to be every bit as excited Tuesday night, when he drilled the first pitch he saw from Roy Halladay deep over the right-center-field wall at Citizens Bank Park.
"That was definitely about as far as I can hit a ball," Freeman said. "That was probably one of the best swings I've taken all year."
Freeman's home run, which traveled an estimated 450 feet, was just the second hit he's recorded in 14 at-bats since being added to the expanded roster when September arrived.
"I'd still remember it even if it wasn't off Roy Halladay," Freeman said. "But it was definitely a special one."
Mark Bowman is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.