MLB

Braves shortstop Simmons reports improvement in injured thumb

Sep 6, 2013; Philadelphia, PA, USA; Atlanta Braves shortstop Andrelton Simmons (19) throws to first base during the sixth inning against the Philadelphia Phillies at Citizens Bank Park. The Phillies defeated the Braves 2-1. Mandatory Credit: Howard Smith-USA TODAY Sports

Sep 6, 2013; Philadelphia, PA, USA; Atlanta Braves shortstop Andrelton Simmons (19) throws to first base during the sixth inning against the Philadelphia Phillies at Citizens Bank Park. The Phillies defeated the Braves 2-1. Mandatory Credit: Howard Smith-USA TODAY Sports

Atlanta Braves shortstop Andrelton Simmons reported improvement in his injured right thumb and is hoping he can return to the lineup this weekend.

Simmons, who suffered a bone bruise while attempting to make a diving catch in last Saturday's loss to the Philadelphia Phillies, received a cortisone shot Tuesday.

Swelling in the joint restricted Simmons to taking grounders earlier in the week. Although there is still some soreness, Simmons said Thursday the thumb feels a lot better.

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Simmons is batting .254 on the season but is mired in a 2-for-20 slump. He also hasn't had an extra-base hit or an RBI in his last 12 games.