Matt Carpenter (right oblique strain) said he was encouraged by how good he felt after taking batting practice on Friday. It was the second straight day Carpenter had hit on the field. He has been throwing and doing fielding work for a while now.
Carpenter, who is already eligible to come off the disabled list, is expected to begin a Minor League rehab assignment soon.
"I came in today and wasn't more sore than I had been," Carpenter said. "Hopefully we just keep progressing and get to the point where I can get in games. You just have to do the right steps and hope that you're preparing yourself and getting stronger."
Joining Carpenter for batting practice was Skip Schumaker, who has been on the DL since May 31 with a right hamstring strain. In addition to taking swings, Schumaker participated in infield fielding drills. He began running again on Thursday.
"Things are progressing as good as could possibly be," Schumaker said. "You never know with the hamstring. I've never had [this injury] before, so you just go off what the normal recovery time is. It was a 2-4 week [recovery timetable]. Hopefully I'm closer to the two."
Right-hander Chris Carpenter has progressed to the point where he can play long toss on the field. There is still, however, no timetable for when he'll be cleared to return to a mound. Carpenter has not been on a mound since March, when nerve irritation near his right shoulder shut him down.
"He's still trending in the right direction," general manager John Mozeliak said. "Maybe in the next 2-3 weeks, we'll have a good idea of where he's at."
Jon Jay (sprained right shoulder) said on Friday that he has felt a lot better in recent days. Jay is nearing the end of a period of rest that began after the outfielder sought a second opinion on his shoulder.
There remains no timetable for when Jay will resume hitting or swinging. He is working through various arm exercises.
"I'm just taking it day to day," said Jay, who hasn't played since May 15. "I'm just trying to get better. I want to get out there as soon as I can."