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04/14/08 8:49 PM ET

DeJesus returns to Royals lineup

After missing 11 games with ankle injury, center fielder back

SEATTLE -- On the bulletin board in the Safeco Field visitors' clubhouse, the hand-printed lineup had him back at the top: "DeJESUS CF."

After missing most of Opening Day and the next 11 games with an ankle injury, David DeJesus returned to active duty for the Royals on Monday night against the Seattle Mariners.

"It's amazing to be back and we're going to get goin'," DeJesus said.

The chronology has been repeated often: He twisted his left ankle getting out of the batter's box on March 24 in Spring Training. He started in the opener on March 30 at Detroit and aggravated the injury as he turned to chase Carlos Guillen's double in the second inning.

DeJesus had not played since.

"You've got to make it right, you can't force things," he said. "So once it's right, we're back in biz."

When the Royals came off the road, DeJesus missed the entire homestand against the New York Yankees and the Minnesota Twins.

"The weather in KC didn't help at all," he said. "With the rain early in the week, you couldn't really get a good feel because you couldn't get on the field."

Despite frigid weather last weekend, DeJesus got on the field to test the ankle.

"I feel confident in my cuts and stuff like that now, and we're going to get goin'," he said.

DeJesus acknowledged he might have rushed back into the lineup after the injury in Arizona.

"There's a possibility of that," he said. "It might not have been ready, but I felt good enough to go Opening Day. It was one of those things and I didn't want to do it again, so this time we made sure."

Now there's another test: Did he lose any timing at the plate during his 13 days of being idle?

"We'll see, right?" he said. "I'll try and see as many pitches as I can and work the count."

Dick Kaegel is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.