ST. PETERSBURG — The Rays continue to get good news on the condition of Triple-A Durham pitcher Tyler Zombro as he recovers from brain surgery and other issues that resulted from being hit in the face by a line drive Thursday.
“From what I’ve heard, everything is progressing as we would all hope,” manager Kevin Cash said before Tuesday’s game. “So that is good news.”
Zombro, 26, was transferred out of the intensive care unit at Durham University Hospital on Monday, and according to his mother, could be released within a week.
Reliever Ryan Thompson, who played with Zombro in 2019 at Double-A Montgomery, has stayed in constant communication with Zombro’s current teammates and also has heard encouraging updates.
“It was a scary moment for all of us,” Thompson said. “Tyler, he’s one of our brothers. Everybody in pro ball that plays, does what we do, is one of our brothers. Baseball’s a dangerous sport. It really is. When it comes down to it, when stuff like that happens, you never know what the outcome could be like when stuff like that happens, especially in the moment, whether or not it’s somebody’s life or whether or not it’s something that could be lifelong. It’s scary.
“So we all joined, it seemed like thousands and thousands of people, in prayer. And, you know, prayer works. From the get go, he was in good hands with God. As far as the update, you know, I think every single thing that’s happened so far has been as good as we could have hoped for. I know he’s talking, he’s walking around a little bit. So thank the Lord for that.”
Cash said two Rays on the injured list also are making progress:
Ji-Man Choi, sidelined with a left groin strain, said he was feeling better and Cash said there is potential for Choi to be activated when eligible Sunday or shortly thereafter, as the Rays head out next to Chicago and Seattle.
Choi is taking ground balls, and the Rays will decide by Thursday or Friday if he is ready to get some game-like at-bats, which he could do in Port Charlotte at the extended spring training camp.
Reliever Chaz Roe, working his way back from an April shoulder strain, has pitched a couple times on his rehab assignment at Durham and felt good doing so, but will need some more work.
“It would benefit us to kind of put him through somewhat of a schedule of what these relievers are going through up here, whether it’s two out of three (games), an up-down or wraparound (pitching more than one inning),” Cash said. “So he’s still got some time left with his rehab.”
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