Justin Morneau Injury: Updates on Rockies Star's Neck and Return

DENVER, CO - JULY 4:  Justin Morneau #33 of the Colorado Rockies reaches to field a putout attempt in the first inning of a game against the Los Angeles Dodgers at Coors Field on July 4, 2014 in Denver, Colorado. (Photo by Dustin Bradford/Getty Images)
Dustin Bradford/Getty Images
Matt FitzgeraldCorrespondent IIIJuly 21, 2014

Updates from Tuesday, July 29

Patrick Saunders of the Denver Post has good news on Morneau's recovery from his neck injury:

Updates from Sunday, July 27

Thomas Harding of reported on Justin Morneau's rehab:

Original Text

Colorado Rockies first baseman Justin Morneau will be headed to the disabled list with a strained neck.

Patrick Saunders of The Denver Post reported the news of Morneau's injury on Monday, and the Rockies' official communications department made it official:

Morneau has enjoyed a return to form in his first year with the Rockies, benefiting in part from a more hitter-friendly park in Coors Field. The 33-year-old former American League MVP is batting .312 after three consecutive subpar seasons at the dish.   

The All-Star break gave Morneau the chance to return to Minnesota, where he started his career, to participate in the Home Run Derby.

"I left the door open, and with the support I got in Colorado and Minnesota, I felt it was right for me to accept the [Home Run Derby] invitation," said Morneau, per's Tracy Ringolsby. "It's the first chance I had to go back and acknowledge the fans."

Entering Monday's contest against the Washington Nationals, though, Colorado is facing considerable adversity, per MLB Network correspondent Dan Kolko:

Morneau's reunion with Twins fans in Minneapolis was a nice diversion in what has otherwise been an underwhelming Rockies season. Colorado currently sits in last place in the National League and has the second-worst winning percentage in all of baseball. Carrying on without Morneau for an extended period of time is bound to make matters worse.

With the NL East-leading Nationals coming to town for a three-game stand, Rockies manager Walt Weiss has to be hoping that at least Troy Tulowitzki can play the latter two contests.

This season is not salvageable for Colorado, so regardless of when Morneau returns, it's hard to imagine his impact will make much of a difference either way.

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