D-backs giving Upton plenty of time

D-backs giving Upton plenty of time

HOUSTON -- Take your time, Justin.

D-backs manager Bob Melvin wants to make sure that outfielder Justin Upton's strained oblique muscle is 100 percent, and that the 20-year-old is swinging the bat well before activating him from the 15-day disabled list.

Upton has appeared in three games for Triple-A Tucson, four if you count Thursday night's rainout which washed out a 1-for-2 night for him. Counting those at-bats, which don't show up in his stats, he is 6-for-14.

"At least a week, whether or not it's 10 days," Melvin said of how long Upton's reahab assignment would last. "Like I said before, I'd like him to have some success before he gets here and make sure some of the rust is off, obviously."

Circumstances have changed a bit since Upton went on the disabled list on July 9. The D-backs acquired slugging outfielder Adam Dunn from the Reds and finding playing time for everyone when Upton returns figures to be a challenge.

"With Adam here now, there's not as much urgency to get [Upton] here sooner than later," Melvin said. "We want to make sure he's playing well when he gets here."

Melvin declined to get into how he would divvy up playing time when Upton returns, but his comments in recent days indicate he doesn't seem to be leaning towards shifting Chad Tracy from first to third and Mark Reynolds from third to second.

Steve Gilbert is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.