PITTSBURGH -- Chipper Jones has known for more than a month that the nagging discomfort in his left foot was due to something more than a bruise. He received further confirmation on Sunday afternoon, when he aggravated the injury and realized there's a chance he could soon be headed to the disabled list.
As Jones pushed off his left foot while batting left-handed in the eighth inning of a 5-2 loss to the Pirates at PNC Park, he felt extreme pain and dropped to his knees. He was helped off the field with assistance from assistant trainer Jim Lovell.
"It was like somebody shot me in the foot," said Jones, who originally injured the foot while racing toward home plate during an April 24 game against the Phillies at Turner Field.
When he first suffered the injury, he missed seven straight starts and didn't return to the lineup until May 4. This time, there's a good chance he could miss even more time and even find himself on the disabled list for the second time in the past two years and just third time since his rookie season in 1995.
"I'm not going to guess anything until tomorrow," said Jones, who plans to visit with team physician Dr. Joe Chandler on Monday in hopes that he'll be able to gain a better understanding of what is causing the ongoing pain.
Braves manager Bobby Cox, whose team has lost 15 of its past 25 games, has already announced that Jones will miss Monday's game against the Angels. Obviously, Cox and the rest of the organization realize there's a chance they could be without their veteran third baseman for an even longer stretch of time.
"I think it's pretty safe to say, five weeks later, it's not a bruise," Jones said. "So maybe we can take a little closer look at it, pinpoint what's wrong with it and then go after it from there."
Heading into the April 24 game against the Phillies, Jones was hitting .381 and had a .513 on-base percentage. Since then, he's struggled with prolonged pain in his left foot and suffered other injuries to both his left oblique and right heel.
After going hitless in three at-bats during Sunday's game, Jones saw his batting average drop to .282. He has just four hits in his past 38 at-bats.
"I can't do anything," Jones said. "I can't push out of the box left-handed. Even if I do make contact, that first step kills me every time. It's just hard, because I want to be out there for the guys. But I'm not doing us any good in the present state that I'm in."
Mark Bowman is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.