09/04/08 7:23 PM ET
Longoria's return date up in the air
While rehabbing injury, Rays rookie will travel with team
By Bill Chastain / MLB.com
Longoria has been on the 15-day DL since Aug. 11 with a right wrist fracture.
"Saturday is the day I take some swings again," Longoria said. "I'll probably start with the little wooden stick again, see how that feels, then move up to a wooden bat."
Longoria plans to swing what amounts to a broomstick with tape on the handle that weighs fewer than 16 ounces. Once he's able to swing the bat, he'll be closer to returning. Once his offense is ready, Longoria will be able to play since defense is not a problem.
"I'm fine on defense," Longoria said. "My wrist feels fine throwing the ball from every angle. It's just the weight of the bat and the compression of the ball off the bat."
Longoria fractured a bone in his right wrist when he got hit by a pitch from hard-throwing Seattle right-hander J.J. Putz on Aug. 7. At that point, he thought he would be back in two or three days.
"It's just a real nagging pain," said Longoria, admitting he's been surprised it has taken him so long to return. "You see me doing all the normal things. It's not a pain where I can't do anything, but to perform my job, I have to have my wrist. ... If it doesn't work it doesn't work."
Longoria is hitting .278 with 22 home runs and 71 RBIs.
Bill Chastain is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.