PHOENIX -- With rehabbing shortstop Stephen Drew continuing to improve while playing for Triple-A Reno, D-backs manager Kirk Gibson began forecasting on Monday ways the 29-year-old could return to the team in the near future.
"I told him a while ago, even if he could come back, play every third day and also be available off the bench, he'd still be an asset to the team," said Gibson, who spoke on the phone with Drew on Monday. "He's getting closer to that."
In six games with Reno, Drew is 7-for-24 with a homer and two RBIs. He played three straight days for the Aces, ending on Saturday, and will get back on the field Tuesday.
"I don't think [when Drew returns] it will be as an everyday guy," Gibson said. "He'll have to be worked in and out of the lineup. We'll watch the whole thing with his recovery. There are going to be limitations if he comes back in the near future."
That means infielders Willie Bloomquist and John McDonald won't see their roles with the club diminish completely. Gibson also left the door open for the duo to play elsewhere in the infield.
"They may have to move around a bit," Gibson said. "They've done better than anyone could've hoped for, it's a credit to them and their professionalism. But at the same time, we'll be happy to get Stephen back."