Help is on the way

Alfonso Soriano is targeting July 24th as his date to return from the broken hand.
Philadelphia, PA (Sports Network) - We are about to begin the second half of the baseball season and when you checked your roster over the All-Star break you saw some holes that needed to be filled.

Maybe you suffered an injury just before the All-Star break. Perhaps Takashi Saito was one of your closers and you got the news a couple of days ago that he will be out six weeks. Were any of these players, Vernon Wells, Hideki Matsui, Rafael Furcal, Erik Bedard or Troy Percival, contributors to your team ?

You have a position to fill and when you check the boxscores, no name jumps out to you.

Perhaps you need to look at the injury list and see who might be coming back soon. Did their owner drop them? Or perhaps they are sitting on your Disabled List and you forgot about them.

Here are a few hitters who should be back on the field in the next couple of weeks.

Magglio Ordonez (.307, 12 HR, 50 RBI) is expected to be back in the lineup on Thursday. If you have him...don't forget to activate him.

Alfonso Soriano (.283, 15 HR, 40 RBI, 7 SB) is targeting July 24th as his date to return from the broken hand.

Hank Blalock (.299, 3 HR, 7 RBI) is scheduled to play three minor league games and then return to the "big" club. Be careful here because Chris Davis has been a solid replacement hitting six homers and knocking in 13 runs in 17 games.

David Ortiz (.252, 13 HR, 43 RBI) is scheduled to start four games at Pawtucket beginning on Thursday, July 17th and hopes to return to the Red Sox lineup in 7-10 days.

Ryan Church (.307, 10 HR, 36 RBI) is looking to return to action within the next week.

Johnny Damon (.319, 6 HR, 37 RBI, 50 runs, 13 SB) will hit off a tee on Friday and hopes to return next week as well.

There are also a few pitchers expected to return in the near future.

Chris Carpenter (2006 totals of 15-8, 3.09 ERA, 1.07 WHIP) pitched a simulated game on Monday and seeks to return to action around August 1st.

J.J. Putz (2-3, 7 saves) just finished a 30-pitch simulated games and will probably make two "rehab" starts before returning to the Seattle bullpen.

Adam Wainwright (6-3, 3.14 ERA, 1.09 WHIP) is on schedule for an early August return.

Comments? Criticism? Applause? Contact Steve Schwarz at sschwarz@sportsnetwork.com.

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