Jacoby Ellsbury Improving, May Return Against Texas Rangers

Jacoby Ellsbury continues to ride the bench due to a bruised rib suffered in a collision with Adrian Beltre against the Royals, but he's inching closer to a return to the field.

Ellsbury took 25 swings in the batting cage Saturday, the Boston Herald's Scott Lauber reported via Twitter. Such progression is a positive sign given Ellsbury has had difficulty taking deep breaths without pain.

The Red Sox are hopeful the speedster can avoid the disabled list. With the successful stint in the cage, Ellsbury may be able to return for the start of the Texas Rangers series beginning Tuesday or shortly thereafter.

Ellsbury has not played since suffering the injury April 11. Jeremy Hermida has received the bulk of playing time in his absence.

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