Ryan Howard will see a specialist Friday to examine the wound on the back of his left ankle, Jim Salisbury of CSN Philadelphia reports. According to Salisbury, the news isn't an indication of a setback. Rather, a good diagnosis could bring put him back on the field sooner than later. General manager Ruben Amaro Jr. said the same.
"We hope to get good news," Amaro Jr. said. "Hopefully it has healed to the point where he is cleared to increase baseball activities. If he is, we can be aggressive with him because his Achilles has healed."
Howard has been making slow but steady progress off of surgery to repair a torn left Achilles' tendon last October. He underwent a procedure to clean out an infection in February. The wound left by the procedure is what will be inspected Friday.
There is still no definitive timetable for Howard's return, though the fact that he is taking ground balls now is positive.