DeRosa feels great, nearing return

DeRosa feels great, nearing return

BALTIMORE -- Mark DeRosa has told Nationals manager Davey Johnson that he feels great, and Johnson said DeRosa's return to the active roster could come as soon as Sunday.

Johnson added that DeRosa could be back on the field within two or three days. The utility man has been playing third base during his rehab stint with Class A Potomac, and Johnson said DeRosa would serve as the primary backup to third baseman Ryan Zimmerman in the Majors.

"[DeRosa] left me an email and said that he was feeling great," Johnson said. "He wanted to know what the plan was, and I said, 'Well, the plan was for you to get some at-bats and start feeling really good and let me know when you're feeling really good.' His answers was, 'I'm feeling great.'"

DeRosa has been on the disabled list with a strained left oblique since April 29. He also spent a few days away from the team to visit his ailing father, who passed earlier this month following a long battle with cancer.

DeRosa was 0-for-4 with two walks and two strikeouts in his two outings with Potomac entering Saturday. In 13 games with Washington before his injury, DeRosa played 82 2/3 innings in the outfield and 10 at third base, going 3-for-37 at the plate.