By Rich Walsh

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BRADENTON (KDKA) — Pittsburgh Pirates outfielder Gregory Polanco says that he could be back with the team earlier than once thought.

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Polanco told KDKA-TV that he could return from injury as early as May.

“They said it would be mid-June, July,” Polanco said. “Now, it [might] be May.”

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Polanco was scheduled to be out 7 to 9 months after shoulder surgery. He hurt his shoulder on an awkward slide into second base towards the end of last season. He was scheduled to be back in June initially.

“Everything is going good with my shoulder, my body,” Polanco said. “Everything they ask me to do I do. Just trusting the process.”

Polanco says it is tough not being ready for the season.

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“All the position players are going to be here and they are going to start playing. I’m practicing, I’m doing everything, hitting and running, the gym but I can’t play and it’s hard. I’m going to keep doing my job, keep doing my work to get better as soon as I can.”