Tulowitzki takes BP, on pace to return on time

Tulowitzki takes BP, on pace to return on time

Tulowitzki takes BP, on pace to return on time
DENVER -- Rockies shortstop Troy Tulowitzki took batting practice Tuesday afternoon -- his first time doing pregame hitting since undergoing surgery June 21 to clear up scar tissue in his left groin.

"It gives me something to do, instead of just being bored all the time," Tulowitzki said. "At least now I can look forward to hitting on the field and hopefully taking some ground balls. It's always nice to get back and do what you love doing.

"It's been a tough year. It's hard to put it into words."

Tulowitzki hasn't played since May 30. He went to the disabled list with a .287 batting average, eight home runs and 27 RBIs in 47 games. His health was compromised from the season's first series, when he first suffered the injury. He appeared headed back to the lineup, but he felt pain in his first injury rehab game at Triple-A Colorado Springs. The Rockies sent him to a sports hernia specialist, who determined that the problem was scar tissue from earlier injuries.

Tulowitzki was expected back eight weeks after surgery and he's on schedule, meaning if there are no setbacks, he'll work hard in pregame drills for the next two weeks, begin a rehab assignment for about a week, then return to the lineup.

"I've been hitting in the cage and I knew I was going to be all right," Tulowitzki said. "The ball was coming off [the bat] in the cage, so the power was still there and my game wasn't going to change. But it was nice to go out there and take it out to the field.

"You've got to start acting as if you're playing, [working] back-to-back days. Now if it hurts, that's another story. Tomorrow if it's bugging me, I'll take the day off, but I'm planning on it being fine."

With the Rockies 37-64 and going through such severe starting pitching struggles that they're on pace for the first 100-loss season, there is no rush to put Tulowitzki on the field. Tulowitzki said the Rockies have told him in no uncertain terms not to "do anything stupid." He will wear a wrap or tights on the leg.

But when things are this difficult, at least it's something. Manager Jim Tracy went out of his way to mention Tulowitzki after Tuesday night's sixth straight home loss, 11-6, to the Cardinals.

"What is very intriguing to me is, for the most part, what we continue to do offensively, and seeing our shortstop out there taking some batting practice early today and wondering what our offense looks like when we get to the point when we're able to get him back," Tracy said.