CLEARWATER — Phillies 1B Ryan Howard this week plans to visit the doctor who performed surgery in October on his ruptured Achilles tendon, csnphilly.com reported.
GM Ruben Amaro said Howard would meet with Dr. Mark Myerson in Baltimore on Monday or Tuesday and be in camp by Wednesday.
"Ryan is progressing well," he said. "We just thought it would be a good idea to see the doctor to make sure he's doing okay before he starts doing more activity."
Manager Charlie Manuel said Howard "had a little setback, but the setback is nothing to get alarmed about. It'll be healed up and he'll be fine. The doctors and the trainers say he's ahead of pace."
Assistant GM Scott Proefrock said "setback" was an overstatement. "It's not a setback," he said. "He's going to get a checkup."
LEE NICKED: LHP Cliff Lee, who is nursing a minor abdominal injury, will work in a side bullpen session today when Philadelphia's pitchers throw to hitters for the first time in camp.
Jays: Good vibes
DUNEDIN — Despite a relatively quiet offseason, Blue Jays GM Alex Anthopoulos said he is as confident as he has ever been going into a season.
Toronto returns a young roster that is mostly intact from the end of last season, when the Blue Jays went 81-81. Several minor-league analysts rate Toronto's farm system among baseball's best.
"There's no doubt about it, this is probably the best I've felt about the talent we have in the organization top to bottom," Anthopoulos said. "I just feel we're really starting to solidify, we did a lot of work drafting and developing and so on, that's going to continue, but at the same time, the big-league roster just continues to get better and better and there's more talent there. … This is the best the group has been since I've been the GM."
Yanks: Too tempting
TAMPA — Just about every left-handed hitter finds Yankee Stadium's short rightfield porch inviting.
Raul Ibanez does, too, but added his hope is not to be "corrupted" by it.
"I try not to think about that because the only thing that matters is having a quality approach, a quality at-bat and hitting the ball hard," said Ibanez, signed to be the Yankees' primary DH against righties. "And for me, if I start thinking about the porch or the fence, then I'm not thinking about hitting the ball on the barrel and stroking line drives. The more you think about line drives, the more the ball's going to go into the seats. And the more you think about the fence, the more you ground out to first."
Ibanez said what he likes most about the stadium is the expansive outfield with "nice gaps."
"I'm going to try and live in the gaps and the alleys," he said.