Correa ready to swing ahead of schedule

Correa ready to swing ahead of schedule

HOUSTON -- Astros shortstop Carlos Correa, who hasn't played since he tore a ligament in his thumb on July 17, said Friday he expects to swing a bat next week, which would put him about a week ahead of his original recovery timeline.

Correa was initially expected to be out six to eight weeks after undergoing surgery to repair the ligament, but he wasn't expected to advance to swinging a bat this soon. He's on track to rejoin the team in September following a short rehab assignment.

"I'm feeling good," he said. "My range of motion is good, my strength is good. I'm just waiting on the ligament to heal."

Correa didn't travel with the Astros on their recent road trip to Baltimore, Philadelphia and Detroit, and he admitted watching the games on television was tough.

"I was sitting at home and didn't know what to do," he said. "I was watching the games, watching a lot of movies. I was super bored. Every time we lost, I kind felt guilty because I'm not able to contribute and help my team win games. It's really hard on me every time we lose because I feel like I'm not contributing any way."

He will start traveling with the team next week when they face the White Sox in Chicago, which is where Correa made his Major League debut two years ago. Since he went on the disabled list, the Astros were 7-8 without Correa heading into Friday's game.

Correa said he communicated with Angels outfielder Mike Trout about the injury shortly after it was announced he'd have to undergo the same surgery Trout had after a similar injury. Trout was out from May 28-July 14, just short of seven weeks.

"He said at four to five weeks [post-surgery] he was already ready to swing," Correa said. "Everything the doctor told me, he's really impressed with the way I've been progressing and I'm way ahead of schedule. I'm going to swing the bat a week and a half earlier than I was supposed to. I'm very happy about that."

Brian McTaggart has covered the Astros since 2004, and for MLB.com since 2009. Follow @brianmctaggart on Twitter and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.