Jason Kendall takes “a huge step” in post-surgery comeback

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Jason Kendall took what he called “a huge step” in his recovery from shoulder surgery, participating in live batting practice yesterday for the first time since going under the knife in September.

Kendall’s throwing program has progressed to 100 feet and Bob Dutton of the Kansas City Star reports that he could be cleared for a minor-league rehab assignment by the end of this month.

Kendall hasn’t played in a game since August 30 of last year and hit just .256 with a .615 OPS prior to being shut down, but the Royals’ current catching duo of Matt Treanor and Brayan Pena haven’t been a whole lot better than that with a .224 batting average and .665 OPS this season.

Kansas City is paying the 37-year-old catcher $3.75 million this season as part of a two-year, $6 million contract.