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Ahead of Schedule
Los Angeles Dodgers catcher Russell Martin, who was expected to miss up to six weeks with a right groin strain, will catch in a minor league game today and could be ready by Opening Day. Team trainer Stan Conte said since suffering the groin injury, Martin may progress quickly and then plateau. "He has done a lot of running, but running in a game will be different,'' manager Joe Torre said. "All of a sudden, it's ratcheted up a little more as far as energy. But he was champing today. He came into my office with a bat in his hand. He feels good, and that is a good sign.'' The Dodgers open the 2010 season April 5 at Pittsburgh.
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A Nagging Injury
New York Giants DE Osi Umenyiora, who was demoted to a situational pass rusher last season, is battling complications from a lingering hip injury, according to the Newark Star Ledger. Side effects from Umenyiora's 2006 torn hip flexor continue to flare up during workouts, according to someone informed of Umenyiora's health status. The 28-year-old Umenyiora will continue rehabbing the injury during the offseason program rather than having surgery.
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Experiencing No Pain
Spurs PG Tony Parker may return to the court earlier than expected. Parker's broken right hand is healing faster than anticipated, and Spurs coach Gregg Popovich said that once his point guard is cleared to play, he will return immediately to the rotation. The 8-year veteran has missed 20 games since breaking the fourth metacarpal in his right hand during a win against the Grizzlies March 6. Parker was encouraged Sunday after taking some shots before the team's morning shootaround in Atlanta without experiencing pain.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.