Hart aiming for mid-April return to Brewers

Hart aiming for mid-April return to Brewers

PHOENIX -- Right fielder Corey Hart was "a little sore" on Monday, a day after he took full batting practice for the first time since straining a rib-cage muscle last month.

He'll remain in Arizona when the Brewers break camp through the end of Triple-A games April 3, then is expected in Milwaukee for the team's April 4 home opener so Hart can see a team doctor.

By then, Hart hopes to have an idea whether he will head out for a rehabilitation assignment. The team's top four Minor League clubs begin play on April 7.

"It would be nice to be there for that Cubs series [at Miller Park from April 8-10], but I don't know if I'll be able to get enough at-bats by then," Hart said.

His next target would be the team's nine-game road trip that begins April 12 in Pittsburgh.

Manager Ron Roenicke said that catcher Jonathan Lucroy and reliever LaTroy Hawkins would both begin the year at warm-weather Class A Brevard County. Lucroy is recovering from a fractured right pinkie and Hawkins has been cautiously coming back from shoulder surgery.

Right-hander Zack Greinke (ribs) will travel with the big league team to continue his throwing program. Reliever Manny Parra (back) was scheduled for another bullpen session on Tuesday, and he will initially remain in Arizona with Hart to continue building up.

Greinke, Hawkins and Parra have already been placed on the 15-day disabled list, retroactive to April 22. As of midday Monday, the Brewers had yet to make any formal moves with Hart or Lucroy.