07/30/08 6:50 PM ET
Glavine 'surprised' by simulated game
Rehabbing southpaw impressed by his three-inning outing
By Ryan Lavner / MLB.com
The 42-year-old left-hander, who has been on the disabled list since June 11 with a partial flexor tendon tear in his pitching elbow, will throw a side session Saturday. If all goes well, Glavine will begin a Minor League rehab assignment with Class A Advanced Myrtle Beach on Monday.
"Based on today, I think I'm closer to being ready than I thought I was," Glavine said. "But that could change tomorrow or the next day, depending on how I feel."
Glavine threw 43 pitches to Corky Miller, Ruben Gotay and Martin Prado before the Braves' game against the Cardinals. Throwing his full array of pitches, Glavine said he tried to imitate a normal start.
"Today was honestly probably as good of a velocity as I've had in two years, at least," said Glavine, who is 2-3 with a 4.85 ERA in 12 starts this season.
Glavine has opted to rehabilitate his strained left elbow without surgery, which would end his season and possibly delay the start of next year, if he decides to return.
"Each time I've picked up a ball, it's gotten a little bit better in terms of getting loose faster, and my arm strength has picked up each time," Glavine said. "So it's all going in the right direction."
There is no definite timetable for Glavine's return, but he will make at least one rehab start, beginning Monday with Myrtle Beach. He could also make a start for Double-A Mississippi before he is ready to rejoin the Braves.
Gotay, who played on the Mets with Glavine last season, said the left-hander "looked like his old self" on Wednesday.
"It looked good to me," Gotay said. "It was the way I've seen him before, hitting every corner and making every pitch."
Braves manager Bobby Cox said he was impressed after Glavine threw 50 pitches on Friday and a light session Sunday at Citizens Bank Park. The three simulated innings Wednesday provided further validation that Glavine is nearing a comeback.
"Really good," Cox said of Glavine's work Wednesday. "No pain at all."
Ryan Lavner is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.