BALTIMORE – Zach Britton had an MRI on his left ankle Monday, and no damage was found, and three days after injuring the ankle, he says he’s nearly ready to return.
“I feel good today, walking a lot better. So, pretty much normal. I’m going to go out there and play catch. Just take it easy, baby steps. If it feels good playing catch, maybe I can progress to flat ground,” Britton said.
He’d like to pitch on the homestand that concludes Sunday.
“I think this week is a good timeline. It’s not going to be today, but I’m not sure if it’s going to be tomorrow or the next day,” Britton said.
Britton wasn’t available for comment after he injured the ankle on Saturday night, and looked a lot better than he did on Sunday when he used crutches and a soft boot.
“I feel a lot better. I think flexibility, range of motion is back. It’s just swollen. It’s got some bruising but as long as i can manage the pain. It think that’s going to be the biggest issue right now is does it hurt me doing baseball things? Covering first, fielding a bunt, or whatnot. Those are things that I’m going to have to test out. Whether it’s today, I’m not sure. I’m just going to go out there and play catch and see how it goes,” Britton said.
NOTES: Hunter Harvey, the Orioles No. 1 draft pick in 2013 who hasn’t pitched competitively since July 2014, underwent sports hernia surgery in Philadelphia. He’s expected to be out from four to six weeks.
Manager Buck Showalter isn’t concerned about Harvey’s long absence from pitching.
“I think if he pitches from June, July on and finishes up strong like we think he can, I think he’s OK. But you’d really like to see him get the ball every fifth day at some point there and kind of get some of that experience he needs to finish off some things,” Showalter said.
-Yovani Gallardo, who’s been on the 15-day disabled list with shoulder and rotator cuff tendinitis, is improving.
“He’s doing good. I’m very optimistic on the return we’re going to get on some of the things he’s doing. He’s moving towards throwing before too long,” Showalter said.
-LHP Jeff Beliveau, who labrum surgery a year ago, has been assigned to Frederick. Beliveau, who pitched for the Cubs and Rays, has intrigued Showalter, and could pitch for the Orioles later this season.
-INF/OF Jimmy Paredes is batting .318 in six rehab games for Bowie and Frederick. Paredes’ rehab stint for his left wrist injury ends on May 15.
MORE ORIOLES: HARDY WON'T PUT DATE ON EXPECTED RETURN