Braves shortstop Swanson nearing return from stiff back

TAMPA, Fla. (AP) Atlanta Braves shortstop Dansby Swanson could soon return to the lineup after missing more than a week because of back stiffness.

Braves manager Brian Snitker said Sunday that Swanson hit off a tee and should play again ''sooner than later.''

Swanson has been sidelined since a spring training game on March 4.

Atlanta is taking a cautious approach with Swanson, who hit .302 with three homers and 17 RBIs in 38 games last season.

The 23-year-old Swanson is hitting .438 in six exhibition games this year.

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