Chipper, McCann, Glavine near returns; Soriano to DL

Updated: August 3, 2008, 6:12 PM ET
ESPN.com news services

The hobbled Atlanta Braves may be getting closer to full strength.

After taking batting practice and fielding practice on Saturday, third baseman Chipper Jones said he'll be ready to return from a hamstring injury on Friday at Arizona, the first day he can come off the 15-day disabled list.

Glavine
Glavine
McCann
McCann

Chipper Jones

Jones

Also, left-hander Tom Glavine, who has been out since June 11 with a torn flexor tendon in his left elbow, will begin his injury rehabilitation assignment with Myrtle Beach on Monday. He is tentatively scheduled to pitch with Double-A Mississippi on Saturday.

The Braves are also expected to get catcher Brian McCann back Monday night after he missed a week with a mild concussion.

McCann was cleared to appear as a pinch-hitter or even catch in an emergency situation in the weekend series against Milwaukee, but he remained on the bench as he sat out seven straight games since suffering the concussion in a collision with Shane Victorino on July 27.

"Sitting there on the bench for a week, just watching, is hard to do," McCann said. "I feel great. I've been feeling pretty good the last two or three days."

However, the news was not all good for Atlanta.

The Braves announced after Sunday's 5-0 win over Milwaukee that Rafael Soriano, who began the season as the team's closer, will return to the disabled list for the third time this season with inflammation in the elbow.

The team will purchase the contract of left-handed reliever Francisley Bueno from Triple-A Richmond to replace Soriano. Bueno will join the team on Monday in San Francisco.

Soriano had pain in his right elbow in spring training and has complained of ongoing discomfort most of the season, even though tests have found no structural damage.

He felt more pain on Saturday when he gave up a two-run homer to Prince Fielder. He suffered his first loss of the season when he gave up an unearned run on a hit and a walk Tuesday against St. Louis.

Soriano's return to the disabled list comes only two weeks after he was activated on July 21 after missing 37 games. He also missed 45 games after first going on the DL on April 6.

Soriano is 0-1 with a 2.57 ERA and three saves in 14 games.

Braves spokesman Brad Hainje said he did not know if Soriano would be scheduled for another MRI exam or other tests.

The 27-year-old Bueno is 2-5 with a 5.02 ERA in 17 games at Richmond, including 12 starts.

The Braves needed another left-hander in their bullpen after Royce Ring was designated for assignment on Saturday and right-hander Vladimir Nunez had his contract purchased from Richmond.

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.

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