Amaro Updates Phillies Injury Situation

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Cliff Lee was diagnosed with a Grade 1 left external oblique strain following an MRI. (Marcio Jose Sanchez/AP)

Phillies general manger Ruben Amaro Jr. says that an MRI disclosed that lefthander Cliff Lee has a Grade 1 left external oblique strain.

“That is kind of what we thought it would be,” Amaro said before tonight’s game with the Chicago Cubs.

Amaro stressed that he doesn't know the timetable for Lee, who is eligible to come off the disabled list on May 4 when the Phillies open a weekend series in Washington.

“We’d only like to have him miss a couple of starts but if he has to miss 3-4 starts then that is what it will be,” Amaro said. “Hopefully it will be shorter than that.”

Amaro said that reliever Michael Stutes has a mild right rotator cuff strain and will likely be shut down from throwing for two to three weeks.

As for Chase Utley’s injured knees, Amaro was encouraged.

“I think in a week or so we will see where he stands but he seems to be progressing really well,” he said.

Amaro had no update on Ryan Howard who has been limited since Feb. 27, when he required a procedure to clean an infection from his original Achilles tendon surgery wound.

Howard saw a wound specialist on Monday. Amaro said Howard was expected to see a wound specialist soon for another visit.

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