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07/16/09 7:03 PM ET

Gonzalez takes infield, batting practice

Injured shortstop's elbow healing very quickly

CINCINNATI -- Typical of a first day back from an All-Star break, the Reds gathered early Thursday afternoon on the field at Great American Ball Park.

Players took infield practice, worked on cutoffs and relays and took batting practice -- the usual stuff. The one thing that stood out was shortstop Alex Gonzalez doing the gambit of activity with his teammates. Gonzalez has been on the disabled list since June 20 because of bone chips in his right elbow and had surgery to remove them a few days later.

"He must have very good blood because he's a quick healer," Reds manager Dusty Baker said. "I was shocked he was going to hit today, doing some short flips and throwing. That's amazing. There's no swelling in there. It was unbelievable. This modern medicine is something, especially when you're a quick healer like he is."

Gonzalez could resume playing in some games soon, but there is no definitive timetable for activating him from the DL.

"They say he's coming back really quick," Reds general manager Walt Jocketty said. "He's at a point where he could probably go on a rehab assignment next week. It's just a matter of the time he needs to play."

In 49 games this season, Gonzalez is batting .214 with two home runs and 20 RBIs. He is one of three starting infielders that have spent extended time on the DL this season.

In other rehab news, pitcher Edinson Volquez (right elbow tendinitis) is still making slow progress since resuming his throwing program. Volquez is slated to long toss from flat ground again on Saturday.

"We're hopeful he could throw off of a mound sometime next week," Jocketty said. "We'll see how it goes."

Between his two stints on the DL, Volquez has thrown only one inning in a game since May 16.

Mark Sheldon is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.