ARLINGTON, Texas – Devon Travis began a rehabilitation assignment at single-A Dunedin with seven innings at second base and an RBI double in four at-bats Friday, a major point of progress for the Toronto Blue Jays infielder.
The last time Travis played in an official game of any kind was last July 28 – when Troy Tulowitzki was acquired from the Colorado Rockies and Felix Doubront started against the Philadelphia Phillies – before the left shoulder woes that led to a pair of surgeries flared up.
A November procedure to fuse bones in his shoulder meant a late start to the season for him, and a slow and steady build up culminated in the start of a rehab assignment, which for position players can last up to a maximum of 20 days.
“He’s the happiest guy on the planet right now,” said Blue Jays head trainer George Poulis. “He was hungry from Day 1, finally he’s feeling better, sliding, running, hitting, so it’s great. Pretty much he’s going through his spring training in 20 days or so.”
The plan is for Travis to build toward playing nine innings in the field consistently, and for the time being he’ll have some DH time mixed in with games at second base.
“It’s a progression that will get him ready to go for when he’s ready to join us,” said Poulis. “He’ll make the rounds and eventually end up at Buffalo, most likely.”
The Blue Jays haven’t yet decided if he’ll stop at double-A New Hampshire before reaching triple-A Buffalo. His progress will help dictate that.
“Never would have thought it would have taken this long with the original diagnosis,” said manager John Gibbons. “He has a simple, short stroke. He gets his timing a little quicker than most I would think. Good news.”
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