Braves target mid-September return for Simmons

Braves target mid-September return for Simmons

ATLANTA -- Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez said shortstop Andrelton Simmons, who has been on the 15-day disabled list since July 8 with a broken right pinkie, still has not begun baseball activities but is continuing therapy to strengthen his hand.

Gonzalez said a mid-September return date for Simmons may be more realistic than the beginning of September, which the Braves had initially hoped for.

Simmons' absence from the lineup has been eased by Paul Janish, whom the Braves acquired from the Reds on July 14.

The Braves wanted Janish primarily for his exemplary defense, but they have been pleasantly surprised by his offense. Janish is hitting .227 with a .303 on-base percentage since the trade. After a three-hit night in the Braves' 4-3 victory against the Dodgers on Friday, Janish is 7-for-15 in his last four games.

"I know he's been swinging it pretty good," Gonzalez said. "He's been really, really fun to watch and to be around."