Healy had surgery to remove a bone spur from his hand on Feb. 14

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PEORIA, Ariz. —  Ryon Healy has taken another step in his recovery and return from hand surgery. The big first baseman will get on the field and participate in a workout for the first time since having a bone spur removed from his hand on Feb. 14. The plan is for Healy to take ground balls, do a few other defensive drills and run the bases. He won’t be allowed to throw the baseball. And he’s still a week or two away from swinging a bat.

Is he excited for the abbreviated workout?

“You betcha!” Healy exclaimed.  “I’m so excited. I get to touch some dirt and see some grass. I might slide really quick just to get dirty.”

The stitches have been removed from Healy’s hand and he’s slowly working to get it back to full strength.

“If you’ve ever had surgery, it’s just the scar tissue and it’s just stiff,” he said. “It’s all PT (physical therapy) stuff now.”

What exactly will they let him do on the field?

“I think what they are going to let me do and what I want to do is probably a little different,” he said. “We’ve agreed upon ground balls and just getting out there. I might have to wear a brace just to make them happy or put my hand behind my back. I told them, ‘Whatever it takes to get me out there.’ It’s going to be nice to run the bases with the team and I’ve obviously been keeping up with all the conditioning and working-out aspects.”

Healy has been in the cages tracking pitches off the pitching machine and catching balls to keep his eyes sharp. He’s also asked the Mariners to order a bunch of tennis balls to do the old Edgar Martinez drill of running them through the pitching machine at ridiculous rates of speed to train his eyes.

It’s a slow journey to recovery.

“I’m not looking too far ahead because you never know with this process how long it could take,” he said. “For me, I’m just trying to take it week to week. I don’t want to set a legitimized timetable in my head and feel like I need to pressure myself into rushing or take longer time or whatever it may be. I want to make sure I go off of feel and how comfortable I am while continuously looking forward.”