Lakeland, Fla. — Tigers outfielder Matt Vierling (right knee strain) expects to return to game action this week, the earlier the better.
“There’s no timetable but it’ll be fairly quick,” he said.
He put in a full morning of baseball activity Sunday — taking ground balls, doing outfield work, hitting in the cage, hitting on the field in batting practice, doing some running work. He said the inflammation was down.
Vierling said he first felt soreness playing against the Phillies in Clearwater last week. Then on Monday against the Red Sox in Fort Myers, he felt it again sliding into second base.
“I was like, ‘That doesn’t feel too good,’” Vierling said. “Then the whole game it was kind of nagging behind the knee and I decided, I’m going to say something. It would be pretty stupid to try to play through this now and we got three weeks before Opening Day.
“Let’s get this figured out now instead of pushing it until it gets worse. I’m pretty happy I said something.”
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