Brad Ziegler Nearing Cactus League Debut

By Thomas Lynch

Brad Ziegler could make his Cactus League debut this week. Credit: Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports

The wounded members of the Arizona Diamondbacks continue to make their way back to game shape. First, it was shortstop Chris Owings who made his Cactus League debut last week after offseason shoulder surgery. Now comes word that another player could make see first Spring Training game action this upcoming week.

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According to Steve Gilbert at, reliever Brad Ziegler faced live hitters yesterday for the first time since undergoing microfracture surgery on his left knee. His day continued with a light bullpen session as well as drills that had him covering first base. There is also the mental part of the recovery which Ziegler can be just as tricky as the physical portion:

"“Mentally I just have to get back into the idea of not being scared of my knee and just trust that everything is ready to go”."

The veteran right-hander first tweaked the knee shortly before the All Star Break and shut it down in early September. If he can make a full recovery when Opening Day rolls around, he will resume his role as rock of the bullpen. Ziegler will be needed in 2015 as much as any other time in his D’backs’ career with the uncertainty hanging over the team’s rotation. If we get the Ziggy of the first half of 2014, the Snakes will be in good hands.