3/10 Nady can hit, but throwing delayed
Xavier Nady made his spring debut with the Cubs but it may not be until early June when he’ll be able to throw without restrictions. Nady, coming off his second Tommy John procedure, went 1-for-2 on Wednesday in the Cubs’ 5-1 loss to the Giants.
“It’s a work in progress,” Nady said. “Even I couldn’t tell you if I’ll be ready April 10 or when I’ll feel comfortable to let it fly. The June 1 [date] is more to play and a guy tags from third, try to throw him out at home. That gives me almost 11 months [since the surgery].”
He said he’ll be able to play the outfield before that date and the Cubs will simply have to make some defensive adjustments, moving the cutoff men back to compensate.
“I heard ‘June,'” Nady said, “but I could play some games here and there. I really don’t know. I think time will tell.”
It did feel good to be in a game, his first since a Minor League rehab outing June 25. Nady was with Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre and removed himself from the game after making a throw from the outfield. He underwent the surgery on July 8. A career .280 hitter, he’s projected as a backup outfielder and pinch-hitter.
“I was happy to be back out there,” Nady said about Wednesday’s game. “It felt a little awkward at first, first pitch or two. Obviously, your timing is going to be a little awkward. It was a positive feeling to be out there and swing unrestricted and we’ll go from there.”
“Nady can hit,” Piniella said. “We have to get him out there on the field and let him get his at-bats. If we can get him on the field, Nady is going to do some damage with the bat.”
— Carrie Muskat