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Stanton's recovery not as quick as expected

MIAMI -- The recovery for the broken hamate bone in Giancarlo Stanton's left hand is taking longer than initially expected, the Marlins' All-Star right fielder admitted prior to Saturday night's contest against the Padres.

"Definitely slower," Stanton said of his progress from June 28 surgery.

Stanton suffered the injury on June 26. While he'd missed 28 games entering Saturday, the 25-year-old said he's currently in the process of building back strength in the hand and has no timetable for his return.

He added that while he has been hitting off a tee recently, he still feels pain and is swinging "as strong as it allows."

"Getting decent -- the ball's coming off OK," Stanton said. "It's just the pain level of it."

At the time of the injury, the slugger led the majors in home runs (27) and RBIs (67) through 74 games. He said the next step in his recovery will be "flips and then hitting on the field."

"I have to swing off the tee with no pain first, then we'll go from there," Stanton said. "I don't know when that will be. I'm just doing what I'm supposed to every day."

Since losing Stanton to injury, the Marlins are 12-16.

"Once it really kicks in and he gets to that comfort level where he is good with turning it loose, then it's gonna be a pretty fast thing," manager Dan Jennings said. "But he has to get to that level first. He's still building strength in his wrist and he's not quite there yet."

Steve Wilaj is an associate reporter for
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