Ross has been getting playing time down in Visalia, with the Rawhide, our single-A affiliate. He hasn't exactly been tearing the cover off the ball, even against pitchers that are more like fetuses than prospects: Ross has gone 2-for-16 with the resulting unimpressive line of .125/.211/.125. That's not the sort of thing which would normally get you a promotion, but it seems that he'll be going to Reno for Friday's and Saturday's games. GM Kevin Towers told KTAR yesterday, "If all goes well probably be activated when we go to New York. So he's coming along well, and he's running at 90 to 95 percent, and that was the big thing."
With regard to the hitting, Towers added, "He was saying it's a little tough to hit down there in A-ball, when the ball's all over the place, you don't know where it's going to go." It's probably also worth noting that Ross is likely still rusty, having seen only very limited spring action. Even including his Visalia stint, Cody has just 23 at-bats since reporting back in February. I imagine he has been getting off-field action, but there's no replacement for game situations, so I'm not sure how ready he'll be to face the Yankees in New York. Given his legs still might not be at 100%, I wouldn't be surprised if he is Arizona's DH.
Eaton has been out with a strained right elbow, but seems to be making some progress, and began hitting again on April 4. However, he still seems to be some way off throwing the ball, which was really the problem to begin with. Said Gibson earlier this week, "He's hitting on the field and he might be hitting in a regular group. I think around the 18th or 19th is one month and it's kind of when we'll redo those tests we were talking about. We'll start to get him in some live stuff and if everything is good around then, we'll start working on his arm a little bit." On that basis, it seems we're probably looking into June before he will return.
Still, Spanky was glad to be doing anything at all, commenting tongue-in-cheek: "I feel more athletic now that I can actually do some swinging." While @IAmCodyRoss has been almost entirely absent from Twitter - just a birthday Tweet to Aaron Boone since the end of February - @AdamSpankyEaton has not been. Here's his Tweet before the first hitting session mentioned above:
I'm pumped... Get to hit today! One step closer to getting out there with the guys! They've been having all the fun thus far!— Adam Eaton (@AdamSpankyEaton) April 4, 2013
In contrast to the frequent bulletins from the team with regard to both Ross and Eaton, there has been nary a whisper concerning Bloomquist. He suffered a grade 2 strain of his right oblique in late March, and while there was no timetable for his return, at that point, it was reported "he had a more significant oblique injury in the past, it took a month and he said he hopes this one won't take as long." However, we now sit, two weeks later, and there has been next to nothing. All I've been able to find is half a sentence stating that "Bloomquist is still getting treatment every day for his right oblique."
Remaining some way off is Hudson, though his recovery from Tommy John surgery continues to progress smoothly by all reports. He threw all his pitches in a bullpen earlier this week, and will do so again tomorrow, before facing live hitters next Tuesday, all being well. Manager Kirk Gibson said, "He's throwing the ball very well," and the hope would be that Hudson will be able to return around the All-Star break, in mid-July, if everything continues without set-backs. However, speaking last month, Hudson was cautious about expecting too much from himself when he returns to the rotation:
"I am not going to set any crazy standards and say that I am going to be anywhere close to where I was in 2010-2011. And there's no point in setting those standards because you just never know once you get back in those game situations after having not thrown in a big league game for 12 months, there's no way to know how things are going to go. A lot of guys say they don't even feel like themselves again until 13, 14 months. So hopefully I can come back and give the guys a chance to win every fifth day."
Finally, let's hope this isn't much of an injury at all, but Hill was held out of the line-up for the first time yesterday, after being hit high-up on the left hand by a pitch during Tuesday's game against the Pirates. That kind of thing can do a lot of damage, but X-rays were negative. Hill reported, "They're just talking about a bone bruise, and they stick around for a little bit. So get a day, get some treatment, do whatever you can do and get back in there Friday." However, it was also said that Aaron had trouble gripping a bat, and his status for the opening game against the Dodgers on Friday night remains uncertain.