Maxwell has cast removed

Maxwell has cast removed

HOUSTON -- Astros outfielder Justin Maxwell, who's been on the disabled list since April 24 with a fractured left hand, underwent X-rays and was cleared to have his removable cast replaced with a splint after an examination by a team doctor on Tuesday.

Maxwell hopes to start doing some hand-strengthening exercises with putty and maybe hold a bat next week. He's still supposed to be out another month or so.

"He said the X-rays look really good and that I seem to be progressing well," Maxwell said of his visit with the physician. "He said to keep taking my vitamin C and calcium and keep using my bone stimulator. It's all pretty positive."

Maxwell admits it's been frustrating watching the team struggle and not being able to help. The team has only won twice since he was injured.

"All the guys in here, we realize that it's a long season and we're all staying positive," he said. "We're all here in the big leagues for a reason, and we all know we can play well and right the ship."

Brian McTaggart is a reporter for and writes an MLBlog, Tag's Lines. Follow @brianmctaggart on Twitter. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.