Scott hopes to return to Rays next week

Scott hopes to return to Rays next week

ST. PETERSBURG -- Designated hitter Luke Scott, working his way back from a right calf strain, ran full-speed on the field and threw in the outfield Friday, and he hopes to start an official Minor League rehab assignment "as soon as I can."

Scott said the assignment will begin as soon as head athletic trainer Ron Porterfield gives Scott his final clearance to get back in a game, which won't come until at least Sunday. Scott added that he hasn't been told how many at-bats he'd need before rejoining the Rays, but noted that he went on a rehab assignment last year that lasted only eight at-bats over two games.

"As soon as Ron clears me, I am gone. I'm gone as soon as I feel good," Scott said. "Hopefully it'll be in a day or two."

While Scott said he felt good throwing from about 280-290 feet in the outfield, he expects he'll only be used as a DH on his rehab assignment.

Asked if he could possibly return as soon as Tampa Bay's next road trip, which begins Thursday in Chicago against the White Sox, Scott replied, "You never know, man. Hopefully sooner. I like to be optimistic and look at the bright side."

"He sounded pretty optimistic," Rays manager Joe Maddon said.

Adam Berry is a reporter for Follow him on Twitter at @adamdberry. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.