ATLANTA -- Braves outfielder Matt Diaz received some encouraging news Thursday afternoon, when Dr. Gary Lourie informed him that he had regained enough strength in his previously infected thumb to begin swinging a bat within the next couple of days.
But while Diaz is moving closer to returning to action for the first time since May 14, utility man Omar Infante returned to the clubhouse Thursday afternoon knowing that he might be just a day or two away from going on the disabled list.
Still bothered by the swelling that has been present since he fouled a pitch off his left foot during Friday night's game in Minneapolis, Infante was still unable to run hard Thursday afternoon. If he doesn't realize any improvement by Friday or Saturday, Atlanta could face a tough decision.
While the Braves don't want to continue playing a man short, Diory Hernandez is the only available infielder on their 40-man roster, and he recently joined the Triple-A club after missing the season's first 10 weeks recovering from shoulder surgery.