DETROIT -- Right-handed reliever Alex Wilson and centerfielder Cameron Maybin are slowly making progress in their rehab, and lefthander Blaine Hardy is set to throw an inning soon. So far, all three are on track to return in mid-April, but this early in the year that can turn on a dime.
Wilson and Maybin both played in a minor league rehab game with the Lakeland Flying Tigers on Thursday night. Before Friday's Opening Day game in Detroit, Tigers manager Brad Ausmus said that both felt fine following the game.
Wilson is recovering from a lat strain resulting in shoulder pain and tightness that he suffered in spring training. This was his first outing since a 26-pitch bullpen session on March 27. Maybin is healing from a fractured left wrist and hasn't taken batting practice since March 31.
Wilson got bombed in his outing, as he got tagged with three runs on four hits in only 1 1/3 innings pitched. Two of those hits resulted in home runs, and he struck out only two. Of the 33 pitches he threw, 23 were for strikes. At this point, though, the Tigers are going to be more concerned with how he's feeling after an outing than the result of the scoreboard. He will take Friday and Saturday off before he pitches again on April 10.
Maybin struck out in two of his three plate appearances, though he did walk in his third. He'll be playing in a game again on Saturday when Lakeland takes on the Tampa Yankees on the road. They'll return home on Saturday for a third game, then finishing the series up on Sunday -- still at home.
As for Hardy, this will be his first outing since being placed on the 15-day disabled list on April 3, retroactive to March 25. Hardy suffered a left shoulder impingement and has been completely shut down.