Hamilton, Shoemaker remain iffy for ALDS

Hamilton, Shoemaker remain iffy for ALDS

OAKLAND -- Josh Hamilton and Matt Shoemaker each made progress from their respective injuries on Monday. The Angels know that much. What they still can't be sure about is when they'll return to full baseball activities, how much action they'll get before the start of the postseason or if they'll even be healthy enough to play when the American League Division Series starts on Oct. 2.

Shoemaker, who played light catch prior to the series opener at O.co Coliseum, said he's "noticed the best progress" over the last couple of days and feels "very optimistic about getting on a mound again."

But Angels manager Mike Scioscia said the chances of Shoemaker appearing in a game before the regular season ends on Sunday is "very remote." So the right-hander's best bet would be to pitch in a simulated game during one of the team's workout days early next week, which means the 27-year-old rookie will have had three weeks off if he pitches in the ALDS.

Still, "It's going in the right direction," Shoemaker said -- and the same can be said for Hamilton, who has accumulated just three at-bats at designated hitter over the last 18 days.

Hamilton, whose injuries have gone from his right AC joint to his right shoulder to his right rib cage since Sept. 4, hit off a tee early Monday afternoon and Scioscia said the outfielder "feels pretty good." Hamilton hoped to be back by Wednesday, at the earliest, but Scioscia called that "a little aggressive."

"But we'll see where he is when we're working out tomorrow," said Scioscia, still holding out hope that Hamilton will get some at-bats against the Mariners at Safeco Field this weekend.

In other injury news, second baseman Howie Kendrick was held out of Monday's lineup as a precautionary measure due to the left hamstring injury that forced him out of Sunday's game. Kendrick said he felt good enough to play and went through all the pregame activities, but Scioscia opted to keep him out now that the AL West title is locked up.

"I don't think it's anything major," Kendrick said. "I'm going to go out and do what I would normally do. [Scioscia] just told me I wasn't going to play today. There was no need to really push it."

Alden Gonzalez is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Gonzo and "The Show", and follow him on Twitter @Alden_Gonzalez. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.