ATLANTA - Get ready, Rome, Chipper Jones is headed your way.
The left fielder plans to take in the first inning or two of this afternoon's Braves-Padres game, then jump in his car with his wife and son and drive to Rome in time to play in tonight's Rome-Capital City game at Floyd County Stadium.
"Obviously, there's no substitute for game situations," said Jones, who has been sidelined since April 19 with a slightly torn hamstring.
"It's important I go up there and chase some fly balls."
Jones tested the injury Wednesday afternoon, running sprints in the outfield and taking a turn around the bases.
He reported no soreness after Tuesday's workout, and the Braves' trainers have cleared him to play.
"I was anxious to see how it would react coming out of the box and making turns," Jones said. "It felt fine. When I can go two or three days in a row without any soreness, that's when I'm thinking I'm pretty close."
If Jones clears his final hurdle tonight in Rome, the team plans to activate him from the disabled list before Friday night's series opener against the Astros.