Hoffman to take it slow during camp

Hoffman to take it slow during camp

PHOENIX -- Brewers closer Trevor Hoffman plans to do less this March in order to do more in April.

Hoffman, 42, plans to take it slow in the initial days of Spring Training to avoid an injury like the one he suffered last year in Spring Training. Hoffman pulled a rib-cage muscle and ended up on the disabled list to start the season.

"It was fluky, but I'll probably ease into things a bit more," Hoffman said Monday, when pitchers and catchers took part in their first formal workout of 2010. "Last year, it was a new organization and you're trying to impress. I might have done things out of the chute a little quicker than I did in the past. It came out of nowhere, and then you couldn't do anything about it but sit. I don't want to go through that again."

So he will slow the pace this time. Hoffman said he probably won't throw off a mound until later this week, and could wait until a week of games have passed to make his Cactus League debut.

When he does begin pitching in Spring Training games, his appearances will likely be short and few.

"I don't want to rush the process," Hoffman said.

The Brewers are on board. Assistant general manager Gord Ash said Sunday of Hoffman: "You're probably not going to see much of him."

"He will be on a bit of his own program," General manager Doug Melvin added Monday. "Trevor knows what he needs to do to be ready for the start of the season."

It figures to be a historic season. Hoffman, who saved 37 games in his first season in Milwaukee, is nine saves shy of becoming the first player to reach 600 for his career.

Adam McCalvy is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.