Recently it appeared the the Detroit Tigers could be without catcher Alex Avila for an extended stretch after he experienced a headache during a rehab contest. However, Avila made it through another few rehab games without feeling any ill effects, and manager Jim Leyland told reporters -- including Jason Beck of MLB.com -- that, if everything continues to check out OK, there's a possibility the backstop is activated from the disabled list "very, very soon."
"There's a strong possibility that if everything's OK
and he doesn't have any symptoms, I think there's a possibility that he could
return very, very soon," manager Jim Leyland said. "We'll just have
to wait and see."
Avila has been behind the plate for the Tigers' Triple-A affiliate over the past two nights, and he's gotten through each contest without suffering another setback. Avila caught seven innings in each of his last two games, and he's also been productive at the plate, going 3-for-6 with a double.
The Tigers recently moved Avila from the seven- to the 15-day DL to allow him more time in the minors. He's eligible to be activated from the 15-day DL, and based on Leyland's comments that could happen in the near future.
Avila has largely struggled at the plate this season, and in his absence Brayan Pena has hit .366 with four runs scored and four RBI in 13 games. Despite Pena's success, Avila should resume the regular catcher's role when he returns, as he has a stronger proven track record than the reserve.
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