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Laura Seitz, Deseret News
Salt Lake Bees' Michael Hermosillo, center, sits in the dugout during the game against Fresno at Smith's Ballpark in Salt Lake City on Friday, June 21, 2019.

SALT LAKE CITY — Bees outfielder Michael Hermosillo is glad to be back.

Hermosillo is officially back in the day-to-day swing of things in Salt Lake after undergoing offseason surgery to repair a sports hernia. Following the surgery, the first of his life, Hermosillo battled a scar tissue breakup issue that kept him from entering a professional baseball game this year until June 1.

“It was a long process, to be honest. It was pretty frustrating just because I did have a couple setbacks. I felt like it was a good time for me mentally to build on that and just be stronger mentally. I was able to take a couple positives from it, just get a little stronger mentally, learn to be positive and things like that,” Hermosillo said.

The lengthy rehab process was especially tough for Hermosillo during spring training, when he was unable to play and compete for a spot on the Los Angeles Angels roster.

“It was really tough just because I really wanted to fight for a position out of camp and I just wasn’t able to, physically. Just being able to get my mind right while I was on rehab and staying positive was key, because it was definitely tough to see everyone out there playing and doing their thing,” Hermosillo said.

Hermosillo’s rehab took place at the Angels’ complex in Arizona. He didn’t have to go through the process alone, as fellow Angels Jo Adell, Keynan Middleton, JC Ramirez and Alex Meyer were also rehabbing in Arizona. Hermosillo often posted pictures and videos of him hanging out with the other players rehabbing on Instagram.

“It was a good group of guys. We kept everyone positive, in good spirits, had a lot of fun down there. I felt like me and Jo, Key, JC, we all pushed each other too, when it came to the workouts that we did with our trainer down there. It was awesome. It was at least good to have a bunch of guys around that were in similar positions that you could build off,” Hermosillo said.

" For the most part, I’ve been really happy with how I’ve been bouncing back every day, especially lately. "
Bees outfielder Michael Hermosillo

Hermosillo participated in many extended games in Arizona, but there’s no substitute for the real deal — actual minor league games. Hermosillo played his first game of the season on June 1 with Single-A Inland Empire, going 1-for-5 with a double. His first game of the year with Salt Lake came on June 5. As he has continued racking up game experience with the Bees this month, Hermosillo has been getting most comfortable.

Hermosillo’s first multi-hit game of the season, the first of four this five, came on June 12, and on June 16 he batted in three runs. The outfielder has hit two runs since coming back and is currently batting .242 with Salt Lake.

“I started out just doing some extended games down in Arizona. I didn’t feel like that ever got you ready for a real minor league game. It was different just to play for the first time in seven months. I think I’m finally starting to get through the daily process of just the everyday grind, which is good. It took a little while just for me to get my feet underneath me from not having spring training and all of those games,” Hermosillo said.

Hermosillo is back to feeling healthy, although there are still days where he can hurt, especially during travel days, but overall, he is happy with his progress.

“For the most part, I’ve been really happy with how I’ve been bouncing back every day, especially lately. The more games I play, I feel like the stronger it gets and the more it’s able to respond to the day-to-day grind of playing baseball,” Hermosillo said.

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Bees manager Lou Marson is knowledgeable on the subject of rehabbing, having gone through some injuries as a major league baseball catcher. His advice to Hermosillo? Get in the cold tub, every day.

“Take care of his body, get his rest, communicate with me on how he’s feeling and our trainer. Coming back from an injury like that, I’ve never had that type of injury, but I’m sure it’s a tough one to bounce back from. We’re going to take our time with him and hopefully he can get back to being the player that we all know he is and get him back to the big leagues,” Marson said.