Longoria: We're going in right direction
Rays 3B Evan Longoria further tested his bruised right hand this morning in Port Charlotte by taking swings and hitting balls off a tee for the first time, and said it was a positive step toward recovery.
"We're going in the right direction,'' he said. "As long as we can keep that up on a day to day basis it'll be a good thing.''
Longoria said his hand "was pretty sore" Tuesday when he took dry (no-ball) swings with a fungo bat (which is lighter), and today swung a regular bat and hit balls off the tee, which was a sign of progress.
Longoria, hit by a pitch in the March 1 intrasquad game, said he wasn't going to set any more dates for his first game, but it should be a matter of days. He was encouraged after being checked this morning by Rays hand specialist Dr. Doug Carlan, but also is frustrated by the slower-than-expected recovery.
"It hasn't been as fast as I anticipated or wanted it to be, but as long as I'm not waking up the next day and feeling like I've taken a step backward, it's positive,'' he said. "It's frustrating. ... I want to be out there just as bad as the coaches and everybody else want me to be out there. It's just that you have to be smart about at this point; you don't want to let it get out of hand and have to shut it down for a week and not be able to do anything.''