Oz should be ready for spring; Viz questionable for return this year

MIAMI – The Braves don’t know if Viz will make it back this season, but they expect Oz to be fully recovered by the start of spring training.

That’s reliever Arodys Vizcaino, who has been on the 15-day disabled list for 3 ½ weeks with inflammation in his pitching shoulder, and top second-base prospect Ozzie Albies, who had surgery after breaking the olecranon bone at the top of his right elbow while taking a swing in a Double-A playoff game three weeks ago.]

Albies might’ve made his major league debut in a September call-up after the Double-A playoffs, but that possibility ended with his injury, an unusual one for a hitter. Surgery went well, general manager John Coppolella said, and they expect Albies to be ready for spring training and to compete for the major league second-base job.

Vizcaino and starting pitcher Williams Perez (elbow) have been throwing at Braves camp in Lake Buena Vista, Fla., and could throw in Instructional League games that begin there this week. But with the Braves’ season ending after a six-game homestand that starts Tuesday, it’s not certain if either will pitch again in a regular-season game.

Perez missed three months with a rotator cuff strain, then returned and got rocked in two September starts before being disagnosed with an elbow impingement.

Snitker said both would likely pitch in Instructional League games regardless of whether they make it back to the majors this season, since the Braves want to get both of them back to game speed before shutting them down again after the season.

“They start playing games down there Monday, I guess, so they’re in a position where they can throw,” Snitker said. “But I don’t know if they’ll get it back (to be ready for major league games) in a week. But they’ll stay down there and get going regardless, to make sure they’re good before we shut them down. If Williams is good, I don’t know if he’d go play winter ball or something like that, since he missed a significant amount of time.

“But the reports are good as far as (playing) catch and all that kind of stuff, they’re feeling OK.”

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