PITTSBURGH, Penn. (WKBN) – Pittsburgh Pirates young star shortstop Oneil Cruz initiated a running program earlier in the week during his rehab process after fracturing his ankle in April.

Multiple reports are that Pirates Director of Sports Medicine Todd Tomczyk updated the media before the team’s Thursday game, indicating that it could be the final step before Cruz actually returns to baseball activities.

Even after returning, the 6-foot-7 shortstop will need to complete rehab assignments in the minor leagues before a potential return to the big league club after missing more than four months.

In nine games before his injury, Cruz hit .250 with a .375 on-base percentage and four runs batted in after he launched 17 home runs in 87 games a season ago.