Stephen Drew ready to go nine innings

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Stephen Drew is getting closer to returning to the Arizona lineup. He’ll play nine innings in extended spring games both Friday and Saturday as he further steps up his rehab.

Drew has been on the DL all season after suffering a broken ankle sliding into home plate last July 20. The Diamondbacks, though, have gotten good shortstop play in his absence, particularly from John McDonald. Their shortstops have a .777 OPS this season (.916 from McDonald, .701 from Willie Bloomquist).

If this weekend goes well, it seems a given that Drew will begin a minor league rehab assignment next week with an eye towards rejoining the Diamondbacks in mid-June. He’s not pain-free, but that’s probably not going to change at any point during the season.