Milwaukee Brewers: Jonathan Lucroy Cleared to Play; Will Rehab in Minors

J. David LeeContributor IIIMarch 30, 2011

ATLANTA - JULY 15:  Jonathan Lucroy #20 of the Milwaukee Brewers against the Atlanta Braves at Turner Field on July 15, 2010 in Atlanta, Georgia.  (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

Brewers starting catcher Jonathan Lucroy has been cleared to start playing.

After breaking his finger during a catching drill, Lucroy had pins inserted in the finger and was out for all of the spring training playing schedule.

Last week, the pins were removed and he resumed workouts, but wasn't ready to play in a game.

Now that he's cleared, he will first go to the Brewers' Class A affiliate—the Brevard County Manatees—where he will begin his rehab assignment.

After playing the opening series, he's expected to move on to the Southern League, where he will play for the AA Huntsville Stars.

After a five-game series there, he's expected to return to Milwaukee.

In Lucroy's absence, it's expected that Wil Nieves and George Kottaras will share the catching duties. Kottaras had a spring training for the second year in a row. Nieves gives the Brewers a veteran presence to work with the revamped pitching staff.

The Brewers are looking for Lucroy to improve his offensive numbers from 2010. He finished the campaign at a .253 average with four homers and 26 RBI in 75 games.