May 28, 2011, 8:58 PM EST
Phillies reliever Brad Lidge hasn’t pitched in a game this season because of a right posterior rotator cuff strain that he suffered near the end of March.
The right-hander took a big step forward Saturday, tossing 24 pitches in a game at extended spring training and reporting no issues with his shoulder. This according to Todd Zolecki of MLB.com.
Lidge will make another appearance at extended spring training on Tuesday and could progress to a minor league rehab assignment by late next week if everything continues to go smoothly.
His goal right now is to return to the Phillies’ bullpen by the end of June.
Ryan Madson has been handling save situations with Lidge sidelined and boasts 10 saves in 10 opportunities. If Madson continues performing well, he should retain ninth inning duties even when Lidge returns.
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