DETROIT -- Catcher Alex Avila says the 93-mph sinker he took to his left forearm in the ninth inning Sunday was probably the most pain he's ever felt on the field. However, his recovery seems to be on schedule, and his stint on the 15-day disabled list should be short.
Manager Jim Leyland said the Tigers expect Avila to be ready for a rehab assignment in the Minor Leagues soon, possibly as early as Saturday.
"Well, a lot of the soreness is starting to go," Leyland said. "Obviously it was pretty sore there for a couple days, still sore yesterday. I saw him doing exercises in the trainer's room, and you know it's better."
Avila was placed on the DL on Monday along with right-hander Anibal Sanchez. Leyland was mum on Sanchez's recovery schedule except that he expects Sanchez to miss only two starts.
The earliest Sanchez could return to the rotation is July 1 at Toronto, while Avila can return on July 2.
Jason Beck is a reporter for MLB.com. Read Beck's Blog and follow him on Twitter @beckjason. Bobby Nightengale is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.