Recovering from dual injuries, Crain does drills

Recovering from dual injuries, Crain does drills

KISSIMMEE, Fla. -- Astros right-hander Jesse Crain has progressed so well from his strained right calf suffered last week than he was able to perform some agility drills Tuesday. Of course, that's not the biggest issue with Crain, who is recovering from October biceps tendinitis surgery.

"The calf's getting a lot better," he said. "I should be out and hopefully running within the next week. The good thing is if I was on the mound throwing and getting ready for the season and this happened, it would be a setback.

"As far as where I am with my throwing program, it didn't affect any of that. That's a good thing and it's still a process, day-by-day thing and building my arm strength back up. Hopefully every day it's getting stronger, which it is."

Crain, who signed for $3.25 million in January, was an All-Star in 2013, a season in which he posted a 0.74 ERA in 38 games with the White Sox, striking out 46 and walking only 11 in 36 2/3 innings, including a 29-inning scoreless streak. He didn't pitch after being traded to the Rays on July 29 because of the injury.

"To have two injuries at the same time [calf and biceps], you hope you can progress both simultaneously and not sequentially so he doesn't have to recover from his calf injury and spend time build up arm strength," general manager Jeff Luhnow said. "It's important he can make progress on that so he can continue to build up his arm strength."

Pitchers Jorge De Leon (quadriceps) and Raul Valdes (knee surgery) could both throw bullpen sessions in the next few days.

Brian McTaggart is a reporter for MLB.com 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.