Jimmy Rollins is no closer to a return to the Phillies’ lineup.
The injured shortstop will go back to Clearwater, Fla., on Thursday to continue rehab for his strained right calf. He has yet to run full speed on the field and only began light jogging recently. Rollins said he will not be playing games yet when he goes to Clearwater.
Phillies manager Charlie Manuel said he doesn’t expect to have Rollins for the upcoming road trip against the Red Sox and Yankees.
Beyond that, there is no clear timetable for a return, whether it is two weeks or a month.
“It better not be a month,” Rollins said.
Rollins has played in just 11 of the Phillies’ 56 games. He missed 30 games while on the disabled list for the first time. When he came back from the injury, he said he felt completely healthy but only lasted four and a half games before reinjuring the calf.
So feeling good while running during a rehab doesn’t necessarily mean the calf has healed.
“Even if I do,” Rollins said, “it’s still not the same as if I hit the ball in the gap and the adrenaline goes with it.”
And that’s the point for taking extra precaution. Rollins said he is operating on the same schedule he did the first time on the disabled list. If that’s the case, he has basically reached the halfway point; Rollins has missed 15 games during his second stint on the disabled list.
But the Phillies could decide to hold Rollins out longer. Rollins said he wants to have an MRI a few days before he feels ready to come back just to make sure there is nothing lingering in the calf.
And when he does come back, he will not play every day.
“I probably need to build it up,” Rollins said. “That’s probably one thing we should have done the first time.”