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Furcal to show he can run well before return to games

Furcal to show he can run well before return to games

JUPITER, Fla. -- Before Rafael Furcal gets back into game action, the 36-year-old will first go through a running progression.

Furcal aggravated his left hamstring on Saturday, and he was on the field Monday doing some very basic drills. The Marlins are off on Wednesday, and after that, they anticipate him doing some running.

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"We'll send him through a running progression after the off-day and start building him back up and testing his hamstring," manager Mike Redmond said.

Furcal strained his left hamstring on March 10. He played two innings on Saturday before suffering a relapse.

When Furcal is ready to play in games, at least initially, it will be in Minor League games, where they can control how much they want him to run or test the leg.

"It's just easier to control the situation in the back [fields]," Redmond said. "They don't have to run the bases if you don't want them to run the bases. We can control all of that stuff."

Redmond admitted there is a concern whether Furcal will be ready for Opening Day on March 31 against the Rockies at Marlins Park.

"Of course, it's getting later in camp and he doesn't have a lot of at-bats," Redmond said. "At the same time, too, he's played a long time. I think he knows what it takes for him. I'm not as worried about the at-bats. I just want him to go out there and feel good and have his legs under him. I think that's the most important thing at this point."

Infielder Ed Lucas (left hamstring) is making steady progress, and he could be back in games as early as Thursday or Friday.

"After the off-day, he should be fairly close to being able to play," Redmond said. "We will probably start him off getting at-bats on the Minor League side of it."

Veteran infielder Greg Dobbs also is resting a quad injury.

Joe Frisaro is a reporter for MLB.com. He writes a blog, called The Fish Pond. Follow him on Twitter Less

{"event":["spring_training" ] }
{"event":["spring_training" ] }