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Lowrie takes step forward after surgery

Lowrie takes step forward

MINNEAPOLIS -- Red Sox shortstop Jed Lowrie hit off a tee prior to Monday's game at the Metrodome for the first time since he underwent left wrist surgery on April 21.

Lowrie swung 15 times from each side of the plate, but said he felt better hitting right-handed than left.

"The top hand, that's the hand that affected me when ... I was playing," Lowrie said. "That's going to be the biggest thing, is just working through that. It was more fatigued after the 15 swings from the left side than it was the right side."

Red Sox manager Terry Francona said he didn't think that the original timetable that called for Lowrie to miss six to eight weeks had changed.

"If anything, I'd be surprised if he's not ahead of the curve because of the way he is healing, but that's a pretty good estimation," Francona said.

Lowrie suffered a non-displaced fracture in his left wrist last May. He played through the injury and hit .258 in 260 at-bats in 2008. The pain returned in Spring Training. Lowrie was 1-for-18 at the plate when he was shelved for surgery.

"I'm happy with how I've progressed," Lowrie said. "I don't have any basis to really go off. This is the first time that I've gone through it. As far as the surgery is concerned, I did the rehab all of last year, but it is a different feeling because the pain isn't there. The weakness and the fatigue is what I'm battling through right now, but there is no pain."

The next step in Lowrie's progression will be taking flips in the batting cage and then full-scale batting practice. The Red Sox do not currently have a set timetable on when that will occur.

"I'll leave the progression up to the medical people, but he's doing really well," Francona said. "This is pretty decent surgery and you don't want to rush it. I think it will depend on how he does, how he feels."

Lowrie went through strength workouts and iced his wrist after he swung off the tee. The shortstop said he would probably swing off the tee again prior to Tuesday's game.

Thor Nystrom is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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