ARIZONA DIAMONDBACKS

D-backs’ Ketel Marte to make rehab start for Triple-A Reno on Monday

May 16, 2021, 2:07 PM | Updated: May 17, 2021, 7:28 am

Ketel Marte #4 of the Arizona Diamondbacks reacts after hitting a two-run homerun during the sevent...

Ketel Marte #4 of the Arizona Diamondbacks reacts after hitting a two-run homerun during the seventh inning of a game against the San Diego Padres at PETCO Park on April 02, 2021 in San Diego, California. (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)

(Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)

PHOENIX — Arizona Diamondbacks manager Torey Lovullo revealed that outfielder Ketel Marte has been making good progress in his return from a right hamstring strain and will be making a rehab start for Triple-A Reno on Monday.

“Ketel came out just fine yesterday and he’s on his way up to Reno,” Lovullo said.

“So, the next step is to get him in a game in Reno tomorrow and just get the report from the eyes that will be watching him.”

Lovullo said Marte has been showing improvement at the alternative site.

“I feel very good about where he’s at,” the D-backs manager said via Zoom. “I got a chance to watch him play 10 innings over the past two days out at Salt River, and it seemed like he’s in the right head place and physically seems to be in a very good spot as well.”

While it hasn’t been decided how many games Marte will play in Reno, Lovullo made it sound like the outfielder was close to rejoining the team.

“It’s getting close,” Lovullo said. “When that lands I’m not exactly sure, but it’s going to be some time very soon.”

Marte has said in the past he didn’t feel he would need rehab starts outside of the alternative site, but Lovullo explained his reason for the decision and how it would prepare their All-Star slugger to join the major league club.

“The couple of games out at Salt River, he was impacting the baseball and he was doing great,” Lovullo told reporters. “He showed us that he was ready for the next challenge, and that’s what we’re going to look at it as.

“To get up to Reno, this is a little bit different of an environment. Things are very relaxed in extended. There’s a lot of intensity from the players that are there and they’re improving.”

Marte is missed for his versatility defensively on a team that has been decimated by injuries this season. However, the D-backs are also in dire need of his offense.

Marte was hitting .462 this season with a .500 OBP and a 1.346 OPS when he went down due to injury.

“I just think there’s a natural ramp up when you’re playing in a Triple-A baseball game versus a game on the backfield in extended,” the D-backs manager said. “I know he’s going to be able to accept that challenge and get him one day closer to getting back to us at the most prepared level.”

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