Stanton visits team; Gordon close to return

All-Star outfielder stops by San Diego as he continues rehab

Stanton visits team; Gordon close to return

SAN DIEGO -- A special visitor joined the Marlins in San Diego. All-Star right fielder Giancarlo Stanton, 29 days removed from breaking the hamate bone in his left hand, has been in California the past few days visiting family.

As Stanton continues his progression to returning, perhaps in about two weeks, the Marlins received positive news regarding All-Star second baseman Dee Gordon, who may be reinstated from the disabled list as early as Tuesday.

Gordon, who dislocated his left thumb on July 11, is scheduled to play in a rehab assignment game for Class A Advanced Jupiter on Sunday.

Stanton, who no longer is wearing any protective braces on his hand, has been taking warmup swings without any discomfort.

"I'm good," Stanton said. "I'm getting the feel right now."

The 25-year-old slugger, who has 27 home runs and 67 RBIs, joked that he is able to open twist-off bottles by himself again.

"He was out here to visit family," manager Dan Jennings said. "He knew we were here, and he will fly back with us [Sunday]. He will progress to the next level when he's totally comfortable and pain-free."

The next level will be hitting the ball off the tee.

Stanton had surgery on July 28, and recommended recovery time is four to six weeks. He said he has no indication when he will be back, but it is looking like it will be closer to the six-week projection.

Before being reinstated, he will play in at least a few rehab-assignment games, as he regains his timing.

Gordon, meanwhile, has been progressing in batting practice. The Marlins are hopeful that a game or two with Jupiter will be all the speedster, who is batting .338 with 33 stolen bases, needs to get back in the big league lineup.

The Marlins open a three-game set with the Nationals on Tuesday at Marlins Park, and chances are Gordon could be starting that night.

"It's possible, yes," Jennings said. "The batting practices have gone very well. He's not feeling any discomfort. Now we just have got to get him into a game, and see how that feels to swing it live."

Joe Frisaro is a reporter for MLB.com. He writes a blog, called The Fish Pond. Follow him on Twitter @JoeFrisaro and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.