Michael Conforto spoke with the press at Port St. Lucie today and said that he has begun hitting off a tee in his road to recovery from shoulder surgery in 2017, as Mike Puma of the New York Post tweeted.
Conforto further said that he has no intentions to rush a return to the team and said that May 1 is his target date. Sandy Alderson intimated earlier in the offseason.
“Timetable is fluid,” Conforto said on Tuesday. “As of right now, I’m swinging, I’m hitting off the tee. So that’s good. I’ve been waiting forever to be able to do that, and it feels great. Really makes you understand how much you love it.”
The 24-year old broke out in a big way in 2017 before his injury, slashing .279/.384/.555 with 27 home runs and 68 RBIs, posting a 146 wRC+ and 4.4 fWAR.
Michael couldn’t contain his enthusiasm for being the team’s everyday center fielder.
“I’m excited about being in center field. It’s definitely a lot of fun out there. I enjoy playing there. I feel very, very comfortable. I understand I’m not Billy Hamilton out there, but I think I get good jumps on the ball. I’m quick — I’ve got a quick first step. If I make my reads and really work on it — which I have been — I can be more than able to fill that position and play it well.”
Conforto also admitted in the interview that he has not gotten “too involved” with new manager, Mickey Callaway, yet, but obviously will in the future.
To listen to the full interview, click here.