Stephen Drew making progress, but no return timetable yet

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Stephen Drew’s surgically repaired ankle felt good enough over the weekend that he was able to go through what Nick Piecoro of the Arizona Republic described as “a hard workout at Chase Field that included extensive time on the basepaths.”

Diamondbacks manager Kirk Gibson revealed that Drew felt “a little sore” after the weekend workout, but in general seemed pretty optimistic about the shortstop’s status:

He actually bounced back real well so I’m encouraged at the pace and the rate he’s bouncing back. He looks much stronger and he seems to bounce back much quicker.

There’s still no timetable yet for Drew’s return and he hasn’t played since breaking his ankle last July, but at least he’s finally making some significant progress.

Pirates activate Starling Marte

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Pirates outfielder Starling Marte is back in the lineup after the team reinstated him from the 10-day disabled list on Saturday. Marte served the bare minimum on the DL after making a rapid recovery from the right oblique strain that sidelined him several weeks ago.

Prior to landing on the disabled list, the 29-year-old outfielder was off to a strong start. He slashed a robust .308/.366/.503 with six home runs, 10 stolen bases and an .869 OPS in 175 plate appearances with the team. This is the first time he’s dealt with an oblique issue, and the first DL stint he’s served since he suffered a bout of back tightness in 2016. While he has yet to prove he can bounce back to his pre-injury production levels, his quick recovery bodes well for a successful return to major-league play.

In a corresponding move, outfielder Jose Osuna was optioned to Triple-A Indianapolis. The move came as somewhat of a surprise, given that the Pirates elected to retain top prospect outfielder Austin Meadows rather than the more established Osuna. Meadows was recalled from Triple-A in the wake of Marte’s injury and has only played seven games at the major league level so far, but he’s already made a strong impression: he went 13-for-29 with three home runs, two stolen bases and five RBI since his call-up on May 18.