GLENDALE, Ariz. -- At the very least, Corey Seager learned on his first day of game action following a two-week layoff that his reflexes are exactly where they need to be.
Seager played in a minor league game Thursday, two weeks after the Los Angeles Dodgers shortstop sprained his left knee, and on his fourth at-bat of the afternoon he quickly ducked out of the way of a high and tight fastball.
“You don’t want it to be thrown at your head, but I guess now I can check off the box that I can get out of the way and not have any pain,” Seager said. “I guess you have that going for you.”
He didn’t exactly have the full baseball experience. He had running drills in the morning, complete with sliding, and then was the designated hitter in the minor league game, although he wasn’t allowed to run the bases even if he did manage to hit a ball in the gap. He did not, as he was retired in all four trips to the plate.
Seeing live pitching again was the real goal of this day.
“There was 100 percent rust,” he said. “It was two weeks now of no ABs, so you’re not going to get right back at it where you want to be at this point of spring training. That’s OK, I’ll go out and get a couple of ABs a day and hopefully get back.”
He said his pregame baserunning drills were completed without any pain. He doesn’t have a timetable on when he might appear in a spring game, but seemed sure that he would be ready to play on Opening Day, April 4 at San Diego.
“Every day he’s getting closer to joining us,” manager Dave Roberts said.
Whether it’s in a minor league or major league game, Seager’s plan is to make four or five trips to the pate each day -- if he is ready to run at full speed out of the batter’s box or not.
“I’ve had no problems so far so that’s been nice,” Seager said. “Mentally it’s been great because there has been no pain. It would probably be a little more frustrating if there was a little pain. If I had any setbacks that would kind of mess with me mentally. So far it’s been good on both sides, physically and mentally.”