Pitcher David Newmann promises he'll take extra care the final few days of spring training and not risk a repeat of last year.
Newmann suffered a major knee injury the day before camp broke. He torn an ACL during a bunt drill and, after getting things ready to go to low-Class A Columbus, never left Florida.
"Words can't describe it, a complete sinking feeling," Newmann said. "Now, I'm just trying to get completely back."
Instead, he'll make his pro debut this year and there are signs he'll be with high-Class A Charlotte.
"It's likely, but who knows," Newmann said. "I don't want to jinx myself."
Newmann was back throwing side sessions by June and threw to hitters in Tampa Bay's fall instructional league. The left-hander, a fourth-round draft in 2007 from Texas A&M, signed right at the deadline and didn't pitch that year. Last spring, he also suffered a bout of food poisoning that knocked him back a few days.
"I'm ready to get my career started," Newmann said. "I'm anxious to get back out there."