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Though bruised, Espinosa hopes to return this week

MIAMI -- Second baseman Danny Espinosa, sidelined with a bruised right hand, said on Monday that he hopes to be back on the field as soon as he can -- ideally for Wednesday's series finale in Miami or, at the latest, on Friday against the Mets in New York.

Espinosa's hand and forearm were still bruised, swollen and stiff on Monday afternoon, and he planned to spend the rest of the day shuttling in and out of the trainer's room for ice and treatment. He said there are no plans for him to undergo any further tests after Sunday's X-rays, which revealed no structural damage.

"The swelling has increased so much that everything has got extremely stiff," Espinosa said. "The bruising is starting to settle ... all over my forearm and in my hand. The grip strength on my two fingers is a little weak -- not weak, it's stiff. It's really stiff. It's sore, but I would say that the swelling is what's making it hurt so bad."

Espinosa figures he won't be ready to play on Tuesday night but is at least hoping to be back in the lineup on Wednesday night. If not, he can let the swelling subside for four days -- including Thursday's off-day -- before taking the field on Friday night at Citi Field.

Asked if a return on Wednesday or Friday is reasonable, manager Davey Johnson replied, "He's a tough kid."

"He's kind of black and blue. A pretty big portion of his throwing hand is banged up," Johnson added. "Probably day to day, but it doesn't look too good. Nothing structurally [damaged], bone-wise, so he's fine there."

Adam Berry is a reporter for Follow him on Twitter at @adamdberry.
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