PHILADELPHIA -- Ruben Amaro Jr. took a seat in the Phillies' dugout before Tuesday's game against the Dodgers to offer updates on the nine players on the disabled list.
That's nine, folks.
Here we go:
Chase Utley (chondromalacia left knee): He did not play in an extended spring training game Tuesday in Clearwater, Fla., but he will play Wednesday as the designated hitter. There are no extended spring training games again until June 12, so in the meantime, Utley will participate in simulated games and continue his regular workouts. Amaro said it is unlikely Utley begins an official rehab assignment until he plays in that second round of extended spring training games June 12-14.
"Generally, Chase, when he's ready to go, he'll let us know," Amaro said. "Just like he did on Sunday."
Amaro would not say if Utley could be back before the All-Star break, but if Utley begins a rehab assignment June 15, he would have 20 days to get himself ready to rejoin the team. That would put him at July 5.
Ryan Howard (left Achilles surgery): He will hit in Wednesday's extended spring training game, but he will not run or play in the field. Amaro said Howard has been jogging and doing some light sprinting, but he also said, "His calf just isn't strong enough to really do full-out sprint work. I don't know what the percentage is, 50 percent, 40 percent, 60 percent, I really don't know."
Roy Halladay (strained right latissimus dorsi): Everybody has been awaiting the second opinion from Mets physician Dr. David Altchek, but Amaro said, "There's not going to really be much difference in the prognosis." The Phillies sent Altcheck results from previous MRIs on Friday, and they just arrived in New York on Tuesday morning. Amaro said Halladay has started some shoulder exercises and other upper body work.
"He's doing pretty well," Amaro said. "This morning's report was he was symptom free and doing some of the exercises, so that's a good sign."
Halladay could begin throwing again at the three-week mark.
Jim Thome (lower back strain): He could rejoin the team in time for this weekend's Interleague series in Baltimore. It sounds like Thome will only DH and pinch-hit upon his return to the big leagues, which could be an issue. But playing in the field certainly seems out of the question. Can Thome be effective as a full-time pinch-hitter after these nine Interleague road games?
"I don't know," Amaro said. "That's a good question. We'll find out."
Laynce Nix (strained left calf): He will head to Clearwater following Thursday's game to pick up his rehab. "He's been progressing pretty good, too," Amaro said.
Mike Stutes (right shoulder inflammation) and David Herndon (right elbow inflammation): Amaro said they are progressing slowly.
Justin De Fratus (strained right elbow): He is throwing from 75 feet. "Hopefully we can get him going in the next couple of weeks," Amaro said.
Jose Contreras (strained right elbow): No surgery has been scheduled yet.
Phillies closer Jonathan Papelbon had some choice words for umpire D.J. Reyburn following Monday's 4-3 loss. Asked if he thought his closer would be fined, Amaro said, "I don't know. I do not know. It seems like there are a lot of guys commenting publicly about that kind of stuff, unfortunately."
Phillies third baseman Placido Polanco left Tuesday's 2-1 loss in the ninth inning because of a cut on his left index finger. Dodgers catcher Matt Treanor's spikes caught Polanco's finger on a play at third base in the eighth inning. Polanco said no stitches were required, although he had the wound glued shut.
Major League Baseball suspended Carlos Best, who is currently on the Rookie-level Gulf Coast League Phillies, 25 games for violating the Minor League Drug Prevention and Treatment Program. Best, 21, will begin serving the suspension immediately. The Phillies signed Best as a non-drafted free agent in June 2008. He went 1-1 with a 7.04 ERA in 7 2/3 innings for the GCL Phillies last season.
Todd Zolecki is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.