Phillies Howard Takes Live Batting Practice

CLEARWATER, Fla. (AP) — Ryan Howard took live batting practice for the first time since he tore his left Achilles tendon while making the final out of the Philadelphia Phillies’ season-ending 1-0 loss to St. Louis last postseason.

The big slugger says he’s pleased with his recovery, but that he hasn’t set a “time limit” on his return. Howard only started swinging a bat less than two weeks ago, and took his first cuts off pitchers on Wednesday.

Howard, the 2006 NL MVP, batted .253 with a team-high 33 homers and 116 RBIs last season to help Philadelphia win its fifth straight NL East title. He was just 2 for 19 (.105) with a homer and six RBIs in the NL division series, though, against the Cardinals.

Howard crumpled to the ground and needed help getting up after he grounded out to end Game 5.

Source: Associated Press