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02/23/08 7:33 PM ET
Notes: Tracy slated to test knee
D-backs cautious with Montero; Johnson to throw again
By Steve Gilbert / MLB.com
TUCSON, Ariz. -- Chances are good that sleep will not come easy for Chad Tracy on Saturday night. After all, Sunday is a big day for the veteran infielder, who will test his surgically repaired right knee for the first time when he goes through agility drills. Tracy underwent microfracture surgery last September, and while he has taken batting practice and done some fielding drills, he has yet to do any jogging or agility-type activities. "Really, really excited," Tracy said Saturday. "Hopefully this is going to get me over the hump and I can get my leg back at a little quicker pace now and be able to judge and gauge where I'm at a little better." Tracy experienced a bit of a setback on Thanksgiving night when a blood clot was discovered below his knee. The clot is still there, but the team hopes that he will be ready at least for a part-time role when the season starts. "Starting tomorrow, I think we'll get a better indication about how he's going to be able to move around," D-backs manager Bob Melvin said Saturday. The team has purchased a treadmill that uses air to reduce the amount of stress placed on the body when running, and in the future, it should help Tracy get his running in. Up tempo: The D-backs held a shorter-than-usual workout Saturday, but it was every bit as intense as Melvin tried to add a twist to the team's normal situational hitting drill. The coaching staff divided the players up into four teams and pitted them against each other on two separate fields. A team received extra outs for executing in situations ranging from having to get a runner in from third to hit-and-runs to hitting the ball to the right side in order to get a runner from second to third. The competition was fierce, with trash talking going on and players focused intently on coming away with bragging rights. "Our game went 13 innings and had game-tying homer after game-tying homer," said Melvin, who pitched in one of the games. "Stephen [Drew] hit two, [Justin] Upton hit one to tie it, [Conor] Jackson hit one to tie it, [Chris] Snyder hit a couple. It was a very dramatic game."
Steve Gilbert is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.