Wednesday marked the three-week anniversary of Elvis Andrus getting drilled by a fastball thrown hard enough to break the ulna bone of his right elbow, an injury that was believed to require six to eight weeks of recovery time.
So, Andrus is only three weeks away from returning to the lineup, right?
"It's taking longer than I thought," Andrus said. "I feel better every day, but I've got to take it slowly instead of trying to hurry and not feel good when I'm there playing.
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"I was aiming for the end of this month, but I wasn't true to myself. In my head, I thought it would be an easy comeback. I'm going to need more than that."
The Rangers made sure Andrus wouldn't return until at least June 11 when they placed him on the 60-day disabled list to create a spot on the 40-man roster for catcher Carlos Perez, who was claimed from Atlanta. Andrus spent the three days in Cleveland resting the arm after Dr. Keith Meister suggested he tap the brakes some.
Andrus is in the most critical stage of the recovery, when the bone heals, and there was much more risk in trying to get a three-day head start than waiting until returning home.
Andrus expects to see Meister on Thursday or Friday and at that point could begin strengthening the elbow. Once the bone has healed, he will have peace of mind when he does return.
"It's still really soon," Andrus said. "He pretty much let me know there's no reason to be in a hurry when the bone is actually healing."
Andrus was joined Wednesday on the DL by right-hander Chris Martin, the Arlington native who had to leave Monday's game because of a cramp in his right forearm. The official diagnosis is right forearm irritation.
Martin was replaced on the roster by righty Nick Gardewine, who was recalled from Triple A Round Rock. The Rangers would have been too short on relievers if they had just let Martin rest another day.
Jake Diekman was dealing with a bruised triceps after getting drilled Tuesday by a line drive, and Keone Kela and Alex Claudio threw 29 and 31 pitches. The Rangers needed an arm.
"I don't think anything is getting worse," Martin said. "It's their decision."