Padres SS Fernando Tatis Jr. to swing bat in two weeks

San Diego Padres shortstop Fernando Tatis Jr. plans to advance his recovery from left wrist surgery in two weeks, when he anticipates being cleared to swing a bat for the first time since the operation put him on the shelf.

Tatis said Tuesday after an appointment in Phoenix that he will swing a bat before the All-Star break.

“This was the first time I came out happy after a doctor’s appointment,” he told the Union-Tribune.

Tatis had the wrist re-examined on June 14 by Dr. Donald Sheridan, who performed the surgery on March 16. Dr. Sheridan saw healing in the wrist but not enough to let him start swinging the lumber at that time.

The 23-year-old Tatis led the National League with 42 home runs in 2021. He reportedly injured the wrist in an offseason motorcycle accident in the Dominican Republic.

When the surgery was performed, the Padres estimated Tatis would miss three months.

Tatis has been throwing and working on his conditioning. He has fielded rolled ground balls but the Padres haven’t wanted him to do anything that risks a setback.

“He wants to get back on the field and play,” Padres president of baseball operations A.J. Preller said earlier this month. “He obviously loves playing. … I think he understands that this is about what’s best for him long-term. I know he feels good, and he feels like he can go out there and do this. But he was very mature in: ‘Hey, I’m going to trust what the doctors are saying.'”

Tatis signed a 14-year, $340 million contract prior to the 2021 season and then placed third in National League MVP balloting. He had 99 runs, 97 RBIs and 25 steals while batting .282.

In three seasons, Tatis has a .292 career average with 81 homers, 195 RBIs and 52 steals in 273 games.