OAKLAND -- Chris Nelson strained his right hamstring on Aug. 28, and it looked like he'd miss the remainder of the season -- only Nelson wasn't willing to accept that.
This was his chance, perhaps his only chance, to make his case to be the Angels' third baseman in 2014. And he wasn't going to let that opportunity slip by. So he went to work, attacked the rehab process aggressively and on Tuesday, less than three weeks removed from an injury that usually comes with a six- to eight-week recovery, he was activated off the disabled list.
"I thought it was very important," Nelson said. "That's why every day I took the rehab serious, and I got in there and got what I needed to get done so I can try to get back out there on the field. Plus I didn't want to finish the season on the DL. That was a personal goal of mine."
When Alberto Callaspo was dealt to the A's on July 30, Nelson basically played third base every day, posting a .210/.223/.350 slash line over a 26-game stretch before going down with the hamstring injury. For now, the Angels will bring Nelson back slowly. Andrew Romine will continue to start at the hot corner in the immediate future and Nelson will be available mostly as a defensive replacement and potential pinch-hitter.
That's fine with Nelson.
"I actually feel like I'm part of the team now that I'm active," Nelson said. "Before, I was just traveling."
Alden Gonzalez is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Gonzo and "The Show", and follow him on Twitter @Alden_Gonzalez. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.