Hamilton sees progress after taking swings

Hamilton sees progress after taking swings

ARLINGTON -- Josh Hamilton still faces a tight schedule as he tries to recover from two small fractures in his right rib cage and be ready for the playoffs, which start on Oct. 6.

On Tuesday, Hamilton took 20 swings off a tee and 20 more off underhanded "soft-toss" pitching. He felt good enough after that to go out and shag fly balls both in left and center field.

"It was a good day," said Hamilton, who was wearing football-like rib pads over both side of his rib cage.

Hamilton said his main problem continues to be tightness in his back muscle near his rib cage. He had to deal with that on Tuesday both in swinging the bat and shagging balls.

"It's tight right now," Hamilton said. "But there are ways we can keep working around the tightness."

Hamilton's plan is for more swinging off soft-toss pitching on Wednesday. If that goes well, he could start taking live batting practice on Thursday and play in a game on Friday.

"One day this weekend -- if it continues to get better or at least stays the same [he'll play in a game]," Hamilton said. "I don't want to do anything to aggravate it. I really don't have a plan until I get to the ballpark and start feeling good. I just want the progression to continue."

Hamilton also hasn't started throwing yet, either.

"Throwing will be the last thing," Hamilton said. "I can hit the cutoff man. Hitting is more important than throwing.