Brian Roberts says he's making progress
Brian Roberts still isn't ready to give a timetable for his return to the Orioles' lineup, but the veteran second baseman feels like he is making legitimate progress for the first time since starting to experience concussion symptoms May 16.
Roberts, who will be out at least through the All-Star break, said in a phone interview that his past couple of workouts have gone well and he’s starting to increase the intensity of his conditioning program each day.
“I’m feeling pretty good. I’m definitely getting better, and that’s certainly been encouraging,” Roberts, whose recent daily conditioning routine has included jogging and playing catch at the Orioles’ minor league complex in Sarasota, Fla., said Sunday night. “We’re still trying to get over the hurdles. Each day, you have to go through something new. It seems like we’re starting to make more significant progress and take more strides recently.”
Roberts, who still hasn’t been cleared to begin extensive baseball activities, said that up until the past few days, he was still experiencing dizziness and headaches after working out. However, some of those symptoms have started to subside.
“We’ll see how it goes as we ramp up the intensity,” said Roberts, who also had wisdom teeth removed Friday, a follow-up to the root canal he had while the team was in Kansas City, Mo., in early May. “You have to see where you are as you begin to progress through the activity. It’s just kind of overcoming those hurdles, and you don’t know until you get over them. I haven’t overcome all of them, but we’re getting there.”
The 33-year-old has played in just 39 of the Orioles’ 75 games this season after being limited to 59 games last year because of a herniated disk in his back and a late-season concussion. He experienced that concussion Sept. 27, when he hit himself over the helmet after striking out against the Tampa Bay Rays.
His latest concussion was sustained May 16, when he made a headfirst slide into first base to beat out a leadoff infield single against the Boston Red Sox.
Roberts has already made three visits to Pittsburgh-based Dr. Michael Collins, a concussion specialist whom the second baseman speaks to daily. His next visit to Collins is scheduled for late next week. Roberts isn’t sure whether he’ll get the full clearance then to begin baseball activities because that will depend on how he responds to workouts over the next week and a half.
“That’s kind of been the way it’s gone for me. When you do too much, you have the symptoms,” Roberts said. “You get the tiredness, the dizziness, the headaches, all of that stuff. But this is probably one of the first bright spots in the last five weeks for me. There have been some dark spots through it. It’s been good to finally see some light, hopefully, and be able to feel like I’m going to make some progress here real soon.”