June 13th, 2009

Bonderman hopes to be back by September

Jeremy Bonderman was back with the Tigers in Pittsburgh on Saturday, but it won’t be for long. He’s scheduled to fly back to Detroit on Sunday and start his rehab work again with a therapist. From there, it’s looking like a long process, and Bonderman sees it.

“It’s probably not going to be within the next month, but I’m hoping before September,” Bonderman said of a possible return. “My goal is before September. I know it’s going to be a long process.

“It just hasn’t been everything I expected. It’s tough. It’s been a tough year.”

It wasn’t expected to be nearly this tough. He faced a difficult offseason rehab process after surgery in June to correct a restricted blood vessel in his right shoulder, but remember, there was at least some hope going into spring training that he might be ready in time for Opening Day.

But the surgery has taken more of a toll on his shoulder than most anyone could’ve expected, including some nerve problems, and he can’t get that strength back to pitch at a Major League level.

“From what Dr. Andrews said, I still have a long way to go,” Bonderman said. “I’ll just start working with a rehab guy in Detroit — for how long, I don’t know — and go from there.”

He’s prepared for the possibility that even September might not be long enough, or that the Tigers will play it on the safe side.

“I just want to get back — if it’s not this year, then at least get to where I feel comfortable going into next Spring Training,” Bonderman said. “I plan on being back, but wherever things go this year, I don’t know. I don’t want to put a timetable on it, because when I came back this time, I wasn’t ready. I’m not going to come back and hurt the team. When I come back next time, it’ll be to stay.”