DENVER -- Astros shortstop Jed Lowrie, who had to undergo surgery after tearing a ligament in his right thumb while sliding at home plate on April 27, traveled with the team to Coors Field and played light catch before the game against the Rockies. He also took some dry swings with a plastic bat.
"This is something I talked to [manager A.J. Hinch] for a while about getting back out and traveling with the guys and not missing anything," Lowrie said. "I think at this point, it's more like the strength and endurance [is the biggest issue]. There's not a whole lot of sharp pain at this point. We haven't gotten into the things that really cause that, like swinging a bat."
Lowrie was off to a great start at the plate, hitting .300 with four homers and 10 RBIs in 18 games. Lowrie said he was told he would miss three months when he suffered the injury and doesn't have any clearer timetable. Once he's able to get back on the field, he'd likely do a Minor League rehab assignment.
"If I'm back before then, it feels like I'm stealing time," he said.
The big question everyone wants to know is what will happen when Lowrie returns to the Astros. They called up top prospect Carlos Correa to play shortstop two weeks ago, and he's been terrific. Lowrie said that there's no point talking about it until he starts baseball activities, but Hinch is glad to have Lowrie back around the guys.
"I don't want him to get stagnant and be away from the club too long, and him being on the disabled list for such an extended period of time does create a little bit of separation when we go on these long road trips," Hinch said. "He's got some family in the northwest, and he needs to be around our team. It will help with Carlos being here and some of our other infielders. It's nice to have his presence and leadership around."
Hinch also said pitcher Scott Feldman, who's recovering from knee surgery, could join the team later in this road trip.
Brian McTaggart is a reporter for MLB.com and writes an MLBlog, Tag's Lines. Follow @brianmctaggart on Twitter and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.