Brian Roberts dialed up the intensity of his batting practice session against third base coach Juan Samuel. He took some light cuts against camp instructor Butch Davis earlier in the morning and didn’t swing against reliever Dennis Sarfate.
“It was good,” Roberts said after taking some good-natured ribbing from Nick Markakis, who was dressing at the next locker. “I did get more comfortable. Certainly at first you’re probably a little timid, but it got better as it went along.
“I always do BP fairly easy. I tried to increase the intensity a little as I went every round. But most importantly, just trying to get your body moving in that direction at a little higher rate than off a tee or flips.
“I think any time you’re coming off any sort of injury, the psychological part is as much as the physical part. I’ve been through that before with other things certainly, and it’s no different with this.”
Asked what comes next, Roberts said, “I’ll slowly increase it. I’m not going to jump in there and start hacking against pitchers throwing 95 yet, but we’ll increase with the BP and the intensity and maybe a few more swings as well. It’s just a little hard the way it is right now because you’re hitting and then you sit a little bit and then you’re hitting. You try not to stop and start too much.”
Manager Dave Trembley can’t project when Roberts will appear in an exhibition game, but he was satisfied with his second baseman’s work in batting practice today.
“We’re moving right along,” he said. “That’s the last phase. He’s done everything else. The last phase is to hit live and it was good to get that started today.
“We’ve made it through all the fundamentals one time. We’ll start repeating them again on Tuesday and start playing some baseball.”
Ty Wigginton made the play of the day during the double play drill (he didn’t ground into one, and shame on you for thinking it.) The ball took a nasty hop at third base, but Wigginton snared it with his bare hand and threw to second.
The next time someone asks how the ball came out of a pitcher’s hand, use Will Ohman’s response:
“Usually in a forward motion.”