MILWAUKEE -- Brewers catcher Jonathan Lucroy will begin a Minor League rehabilitation assignment on Thursday, and could be back in the big leagues by the end of next week. Lucroy, recovering from a fractured bone in his right hand, will begin his rehab at Class A Wisconsin, just up the road from Miller Park in Appleton, Wis. The Timber Rattlers' website said that assignment will tentatively run through Sunday. "With him going there, it's a little bit more controlled," Roenicke said. "With everything going right, Nashville will be home [the following week] and maybe we'll get him a few games there and see where he is."
Lucroy could join the Triple-A Nashville Sounds when they begin a homestand on July 24. The Brewers are in Philadelphia at that time, but will return to Miller Park beginning Thursday, July 26, against the Nationals. Lucroy's arrival would return one of the Brewers' top early-season run producers to the lineup while creating a problem at the same time. Call-up Martin Maldonado has been a bright spot in Lucroy's place, carrying a .285 average and five home runs into Monday's start against the Cardinals. Maldonado said he isn't worried about what Lucroy's pending return would do to his playing time, or his spot on the roster. "I'm happy he's coming back," Maldonado said. "He's been a mentor to me. I have no idea what will happen, but it's OK."