He again threw and fielded ground balls on Wednesday, but coaches still haven’t let him hit.
“Yesterday was good,” Gonzalez said Wednesday. “The only issue he told (trainer Jeff Porter) was that when he went to dig in for the ball in the glove, he kind of still felt it a little bit. Other than that, he’s making a lot of progress.”
Gonzalez said he’s hopeful Simmons will suit up by the end of the week.
Daniel Castro, called up from Triple-A to fill in at shortstop, went into Wednesday game 5-for-13 (.385) with a double and two runs scored.
“He’s a guy that you appreciate,” Gonzalez said. “The more you see him play, you appreciate him. And he’s got great feet around the bag, second base. He’s got short hands. He’s a guy, the more you watch him play, the better you appreciate him.”
Chris Johnson started at first base Tuesday and, after the Kelly Johnson’s trade, he’ll likely stay there for the bulk of Freeman’s recovery.
He went 2-for-4 with a homer after Freeman left in the fifth inning of Atlanta’s 12-inning 9-8 win Monday.
He went 0-for-4 with three strikeouts Tuesday. His mental gaffe in the field — he lost track of Giants’ outs — also cost starter Shelby Miller a run in the sixth inning of their 8-3 loss.