Valaika (oblique) is listed as an available reserve for Sunday's Cactus League game against the Giants, Patrick Saunders of The Denver Post reports.
The oblique injury has prevented Valaika from logging any Cactus League action since Feb. 25, but the utility man looks to be near or close to full strength after taking part in a minor-league game last week. While it would behoove him to pick up some more at-bats with the big club before spring training ends, Valaika may still be in good position to win an Opening Day role with the similarly versatile Ryan McMahon looking likely to open the campaign at Triple-A Albuquerque.
Valaika (oblique) returned to action in a minor-league game Wednesday, Thomas Harding of MLB.com reports.
Valaika went 1-for-3 with a single during his first time back on the field since going down with a left oblique injury in late February. He said that he felt good following Wednesday's game and it seems likely that the utility man will be back in Cactus League action in the coming days.
Valaika (oblique) will likely remain out until Opening Day, Patrick Saunders of The Denver Post reports.
Valaika has been able to take ground balls and throw without pain, but it's unlikely that he'll make a return before spring training comes to a close. The Rockies are being extremely cautious with their 25-year-old shortstop, as the last thing they need is for him to suffer a setback. Valaika is expected to be a super-utility player for Colorado this year, assuming he's able to return for the start of the regular season.
Valaika (oblique) was able to start hitting off a tee and taking grounders Wednesday, Thomas Harding of MLB.com reports.
Valaika has only appeared in three Cactus League games this spring but is continuing to work his way back from a left oblique injury he suffered in late February. The 25-year-old is expected to be utilized in some sort of utility role in 2018 while D.J. LeMahieu and Trevor Story man the middle infield positions. Expect him to be back in action in the near future.
Valaike went 2-for-2 including a home run and two RBI Sunday against the Padres.
Although Valaike didn't get the start Sunday, he was inserted late in the game at third base -- he capitalized in both of his at-bats, providing the Rockies with two extra-base hits. The California native continues to prove that he can contribute off the bench, hitting his 13th home run of the season to go along with 40 RBI in 176 at-bats. Valaike will continue to come off the bench and receive the occasional start as the season comes to a close.
|10/4/2017 vs Arizona|
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|Last 7 Games|
|Complete Game Log|
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|More Batting Stats|
|Minor League Batting Stats|
|2013||ASX-Tri-City Dust Devils||42||146||27||35||15||2||1||18||23||33||5||3||.345||.390||.240|
|2015||AA-New Britain Rock Cat||124||468||57||110||25||5||8||57||30||117||19||7||.281||.361||.235|