Flowers progressing with rehab schedule

Catcher hit balls off a tee Saturday; could return in two weeks

Flowers progressing with rehab schedule

ATLANTA -- Although the Braves might add a catcher ahead of Monday's non-waiver Trade Deadline, the team could further bolster the position in the coming weeks with Tyler Flowers' return from the disabled list.

Two days removed from taking some dry swings, the 30-year-old backstop hit balls off a tee on Saturday and said he is ahead of schedule in his rehab from a fractured left hand.

"The way it feels is great," Flowers said. "In all seriousness, I feel like I could play today. It probably wouldn't be the smartest move, but that's what [the doctors are] there for.

"Hopefully I can get them to speed it up a little bit, but with that said, we all look foolish if I get back out there and it breaks right away. So I'll make sure of it, but the schedule right now, I think, is give or take two weeks to be back here."

When Flowers landed on the DL on July 15, his return timeline sat at four to six weeks. But as of now, it appears he could be back on the short end of that estimate.

In addition to his work with a bat, Flowers made it through an upper-body workout on Friday. He said he was unsure how his hand would react to pressing 100-pound dumbbells, but he did so, pain-free, while not wearing a brace.

Before his injury, Flowers was experiencing a career year at the plate, hitting .253/.343/.425. The catcher batted .286 with four homers and five doubles in his final 15 games before being placed on the DL.

"Everything is right on track with him," Braves manager Brian Snitker said. "I know there's a healing process and you get X-rayed and all of that kind of stuff, but he says he feels pretty good. That's great."

Pat James is a reporter for based in Atlanta. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.