D-backs’ Ahmed, Luplow start baseball activity; Rojas still in training room

Apr 7, 2022, 4:27 PM
Arizona Diamondbacks second baseman Josh Rojas, right, throws to first base as shortstop Nick Ahmed...

Arizona Diamondbacks second baseman Josh Rojas, right, throws to first base as shortstop Nick Ahmed, left, watches during the first inning of a baseball game against the San Diego Padres, Friday, Aug 13, 2021, in Phoenix. (AP Photo/Darryl Webb)

(AP Photo/Darryl Webb)

PHOENIX — The Arizona Diamondbacks are set to embark on their 2022 campaign.

Unfortunately for the D-backs, the team comes into Opening Day with a handful of players already dealing with injuries — three of which are hitters.

Shortstop Nick Ahmed (shoulder), infielder Josh Rojas (oblique) and outfielder Jordan Luplow (oblique) open the year on the 10-day injured list, and manager Torey Lovullo provided an update on each of them prior to Thursday’s first pitch.

“(Ahmed) started some baseball activity, he’s climbed out of the training room,” Lovullo said. “He had been taking ground balls — it’s his right shoulder, so he’s been taking ground balls and doing all sorts of fielding activity without throwing a baseball.

“He started to swing and make contact with the ball (off the) tee and flips as of a couple of days ago, so he’s slowly beginning his transition.”

Lovullo added that Luplow was in a similar boat and has “started to do some very light baseball activity.” This comes after the Diamondbacks manager said the outfielder would be out “a little while” on March 30.

However, Rojas “has not transitioned out of the training room at this point.”

The absence of Ahmed and Rojas gives Geraldo Perdomo an opportunity to start as the D-backs’ Opening Day shortstop and hit in the No. 9 hole. His middle infield partner, second baseman Ketel Marte, will be batting second in the lineup with outfielder Daulton Varsho leading off — and that turnaround of the lineup is by design.

“Your best hitter, most creative hitter, your most impactful hitter hits second and I want to create as many run-scoring opportunities for Ketel as possible,” Lovullo explained.

“So yes, I liked the way Perdomo surveys the ball and strikes while he’s at the plate. I think he’s going to find himself on base a lot for the turnaround of that lineup, which will include Varsho. So I want Ketel to hit with two men on base if possible.”

The D-backs host the San Diego Padres at Chase Field on Opening Day at 6:40 p.m. on 98.7 FM Arizona’s Sports Station.

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D-backs’ Ahmed, Luplow start baseball activity; Rojas still in training room