Martin Prado felt pain in his broken right pinky finger when he took batting practice Friday, a sign that he likely won’t come off the disabled list by the weekend.
The All-Star second baseman is eligible to come of the 15-day disabled list on Sunday. His return to the lineup would be a boost for the Braves following the season-ending injury to Chipper Jones.
“The vibration is bothering me,” Prado said. “It stings a little bit.”
Prado was to take batting practice on the field prior to Friday’s series opener against the Dodgers. A brief rain at Turner Field forced the Braves to hit in the indoor facility. Prado said he did not spend much time hitting once he felt the pain.
“They told me it won’t be easy,” Prado said. “It’s not going to go away. I’m just trying to get all my strength back. A little bit of pain won’t be a problem.”
Braves manager Bobby Cox said he did not think Prado would be ready by Sunday.
Prado said he would see how his finger felt Saturday, a day after his first live hitting, and did not want to put a timetable on a return. He said he would play with pain once the finger was stable. However, he expressed concern about not wanting to adjust his hitting mechanics in an effort to return.
Prado said there have been no issues fielding ground balls or soft tossing a baseball.
“I wish I could tell you how long it’s going to take,” Prado said. “I’m going to do as much as I can to get back.”
He did not want to speculate on whether he would need a minor-league rehab assignment once he was healthy enough to play.
Prado, fourth in the National League with a .315 average, was placed on the disabled list on July 31, a day after suffering the injury sliding into home plate against the Reds. He has missed 13 games.