Marlins pencil in Sunday return for Stanton

Marlins pencil in Sunday return for Stanton

JUPITER, Fla. -- A target date for Giancarlo Stanton to return to Grapefruit League game action has been set. Barring any setbacks, the three-time All-Star right fielder is scheduled to be in the Marlins' lineup on Sunday against the Mets at 1:05 p.m. ET at Roger Dean Stadium, in a game that will be available on MLB.TV.

Stanton, who last played on Saturday, has been dealing with a sore right knee, but he's been on the field going through a regular pregame routine in recent days. He's been throwing, fielding and taking batting practice with the rest of the club.

The Marlins travel to Fort Myers for games on Friday against the Twins and Saturday against the Red Sox, and Stanton will not make the trip to Florida's west coast.

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"If everything goes well, we're kind of shooting for him when we're back, Sunday," manager Don Mattingly said. "Obviously, we're still day to day and will see how everything goes. It seems realistic. Everything seems to have been pretty good so far."

The Marlins also aren't sending pitchers Wei-Yin Chen, Jose Fernandez and Mike Dunn to Fort Myers.

With a number of pitchers staying in Jupiter, Stanton is expected to get some at-bats over the next few days on the back fields at the Roger Dean Stadium complex.

Stanton has appeared in two Grapefruit League games. He is 1-for-3 with a double.

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"We'll leave him back the next couple of days," Mattingly said. "We have a number of guys throwing back here. He will have some live BP back here while we're gone."

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.