ANAHEIM -- Angels outfielder Vernon Wells could return to the lineup as soon as Tuesday night after being out for more than three weeks.
Wells hasn't played since straining his right groin during an at-bat against the White Sox on May 9. He is on the disabled list and began a rehab assignment with the Angels' Class A Inland Empire 66ers on Sunday.
The three-time All Star went 0-for-2 but reached base on a walk and scored a run while playing five innings in left field in the 66ers' 10-4 win against High Desert in Adelanto, Calif.
Angels manager Mike Scioscia said he spoke Monday with Wells, who told him he "feels great." The club expected Wells to play deeper into the 66ers' game on Monday night.
"Make sure he comes out with no stiffness and we'll make a decision tonight," Scioscia said. "If we think he's close to being ready we'll get him in the lineup tomorrow. If he needs a little more, we'll let him keep playing."
Wells, who is a career .277 hitter with 227 home runs, could help inject some much-needed offense into the Angels' lineup with his return. Though he hit just .183 with four home runs in 35 games before being hurt, Wells belted three home runs in his last eight games.
"A lot of the feedback is how he's feeling," Scioscia said. "But definitely our staff is looking at him and how he's moving. He went first to third really well yesterday, ran well, that's a really good sign for a groin injury."