March 23rd, 2009
Feels like I’ve written this before — though technically, Joel Zumaya started throwing off a mound last time before I got down here — but head athletic trainer Kevin Rand said Zumaya threw a “light” side session off of a mound this morning and felt good. I use quotation marks for light because with Zumaya, it can be relative at times. The duration of it, though, was light. They’ll see how he feels tomorrow and then set up a longer session for him.
Jim Leyland called it good news, but said he still doubts whether Zumaya will be ready when the season starts. He would like to get to a point where he felt comfortable pitching Zumaya on back-to-back days.
“It’s starting to become a real short Spring Training,” Leyland said.
In camp game news for Tuesday, add Armando Galarraga to the pitching list for that game. He’s go for about 65 pitches Tuesday, then get an extra day of rest before getting into an actual game next Monday against the Nationals at Viera. If you project out every five days from there, that would put his first regular-season turn on April 9, the final game of the series at Toronto. But for all we know, he could get another day of rest and pitch the home opener. Leyland said today he has a pitching plan set for Opening Day, the next day and he thinks the home opener April 10, but he isn’t ready to announce it yet. Verlander and Jackson appear to be on schedule for the first two games, respectively.